Lord of heaven and earth, Lord of all creation, you are maker of all things. All our efforts, all our endeavors, every idea, desire and design we dream has its genesis in you.
But we are fallen people. Left on our own, our work is ultimately futile. Our sinful tendency is to turn our energy and creativity toward selfish things. Apart from your grace, we pursue the graceless. Absent your love, the object of our heart’s desire is our own heart, which is never satisfied. Lord, forgive us our trespasses.
You desire for us so much more. Your plan for your people is to lift us up, to encourage us, and to equip us to do good in your creation, your community, your kingdom. You are the vine and we are the branches. Lord, nurture us to bear fruit that feeds our neighbors as well as ourselves.
As we enter a new year, remind us that your blessings are new every day. Give us strength to meet the challenges that face us. Give us imagination to overcome the obstacles in our way. Give us faith to endure the lean and dry seasons. Give us our daily bread.
Most of all, Lord, give us love to see those around us who have no bread, little strength, faint hope, and shattered faith. Then give us courage to act in your name.
Lord, we ask that you bless the work of our hands. We ask that our work will find favor among those we seek to serve. But we ask these things not for our glory, but for yours. May those around us see our good work and glorify you, Heavenly Father.
As we plan for the year ahead, we thank you for the gifts of work and time. We thank you for privilege of serving you while serving others. We praise you for opportunities large and small, and for the talents, also large and small, to pursue them.
May we see this next year for what it really is—a blessing from you, the father of light, the giver of all good gifts. As we face each dawning day, fill us with the peace of knowing you are with us and that, in you, there is no darkness at all.
Thank you, Jesus, for your indescribable gift.