Prayers for Choirs: No. 1

Prayers-for-Church-Choirs_Joy-and-Sorrow-01.png

I've been thinking a lot about joy and sorrow lately.

At first, they seem like opposites: Most people don't feel a sense of joy in the midst of sorrow, right? But joy - it's hard to describe joy in a way that isn't tinged by sorrow. Joy is wise - it recognizes where we've come from, what we've been through; it acknowledges the sorrowful parts of our lives.

Someone recently described it like this:

We carry joy in our right hand, sorrow in our left.

We walk through life with both in front of us, like we walk, one foot in front of the other. We can't have one without the other without losing balance.

We walk through life knowing that it can't all be joy and it won't all be sorrow. But we recognize the value of both.

We hold onto our joy in times of sorrow and remember our sorrow in times of joy. And when we come to God in prayer, we bring our hands - our joy and sorrow - together, and we pray.

Prayer

Dear God,

We thank you for joy - The joy we find in laughter and singing And community And the world around us. For its quietness and simplicity, Shining within us, Spurring us on to do good works.

We thank you for sorrow - For times that draw us closer to You, That teach us how to trust. For gray days That give us new appreciation of the sun. For love and memories, Friendship and change.

Thank you for seasons and rhythms of life, A life beautifully woven together With both joy and sorrow, Light and darkness, Clarity and dimness, Sunshine and rain.

We pray for wisdom To see the beauty of a life well-lived. To hold onto our joy In times of sorrow, And remember our sorrow, In times of joy, And see Your hand at work in our lives.

Amen.

© 2016 Ashley Danyew