The cross - an instrument of torture becomes the means by which we are reconciled to God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit). Laying all before the Lord, we entrust ourselves, and all creation, into your loving arms that we might sleep and tomorrow rise to a new day of blessing.
The seasons slowly change and darkness is once again our companion as the day ends.
But the light of Christ shines and cannot be overcome.
So we pray for those in dark places and for those who marched away making a differnce.
Some paying with broken bodies and minds and even life itself.
dona eis requiem.
The gathered fragments of the day reflecting all that has been are laid at the foot of the cross.
Lord bring healing and peace and as we sleep enable us to wake to a new day of blessing given and received. Amen.
God has called us; we who are so often weak, flawed and broken.
As laos (the people of God) standing with others in the faith, we are Church and the gates of hell will not prevail against us.
Cradle us, tend us and bring us sleep this night we pray.
The images are Bernard of Clairvaux, Catherine and William Booth.
Life, that divine spark within us, gifts us with the ability to create.
We reflect on the day and find within us that place of peace in images, sound, smell, words
and let peace cover us like a blanket as we head for our beds.
Do we believe Jesus, the Christ, died for us?
If we do then as we close the day what makes that belief real for us?
Does the one salvific act on the cross for you transform you (and me and us)?
New every morning is Your love and our opportunities - hallelujah!
The image is 'Jesus at the Tomb' by Jean Jacques Henner
Maximilian Kolbe - A Franciscan 'intellectual, imprisoned in Auschwitz, exchanged places with a prisoner sentenced to die. The man lived to tell the tale of Kolbe's action and having been given his life back, vowed to live differently.
We were dead until Jesus gave His life for us - may we live differently too.
Night falls and the reality that, whether we are awake or asleep we live with God through the shedding of the blood of Jesus, the Christ, for our redemption. May we awake tomorrow to a day of blessing and grace. Amen.
The images are Jeremy Taylor, Florence Nightingale and Octavia Hill
Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who wake, or watch, or weep this night,
and give your angels charge over those who sleep.
Tend the sick, give rest to the weary, sustain the dying,
calm the suffering, and pity the distressed;
all for your love's sake, O Christ our Redeemer. Amen.
For the small moments of joy, the ephemera of blessing found in the glimpses of Your love,
we bring all the day has held and, with gratitude, lay all at Your feet Lord.
Be with us, and all creation, this night we pray. Amen.
The image is that of Mary Sumner - founder of the Mothers' Union - 1921
The day ends and the realisation that there's nothing we can do to earn God's favour, no price we can pay for God's Grace to us. For it is freely given to us by the death and resurrection of the Christ. Hallelujah!
The day ends and we lay all that it has held and been, and all that clings to us like dust, before you Lord. Take the burdens and the joys, the blessings (given and received) and our failing from us and grant us sleep this night we pray. Amen.
Tonight as we reflect on the ending day we rejoice in the calling of Jean Vianney - a priest of humble origins. No academic, but a man with a heart of humility, love and devotion to God and the people in his care.
May these be the hallmarks of our lives also we pray.
Tonight, as we prepare for bed,
we reflect on the blessings received this day (and beyond) and blessings given this day.
The small blessings which when reflected upon against the needs of others
brings gratitude and thanks as we go to our beds in peace.
The day ends and we bring all it has been before the Lord.
Be with us this night as we sleep - surround us with Your peace that we might sleep and,
rising tomorrow, share Your love and life with all we meet. Amen.