Weekly thoughts from the Rector of Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas, where these words remind us that Jesus’ peace goes with us into the world.
In the days leading up to this Labor Day weekend, I was perusing the website of the Theology of Work Project, which reflects on the high calling of our daily work. There I found a prayer that I’ve adapted for us to ponder on the eve of this holiday. Perhaps these words will become your own words in worship today and in leisure tomorrow:
Generous God, just as we love because you first loved us, we give because you first gave to us. Out of gratitude we bring gifts of money to be used for your kingdom work in our churches and in the city and its neighborhoods that surround them. With these gifts we also pledge to you our whole selves.
We give you our bodies as living temples; may we be the hands and feet of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. We give you our minds; may our thoughts support the needs of others and reflect on your goodness. We give you our time; may our presence encourage others within and beyond these walls. We give you our relationships and our friendships; may our interactions be a light to the world. We give you our work; may we always strive to do our best and help those around us to do theirs. We give you our play; may our recreation be a reminder to us of the joy and wonder of childhood. We give you our hopes and our dreams; may our goals be directed to your mission.
Use these gifts, great God, through the power of your Holy Spirit. Amen.
— The Rev. Neil Alan Willard, Rector