In his book, The Meaning of Prayer, Harry Emerson Fosdick writes:
"One day in Paris, a religious procession carrying a crucifix passed Voltaire and a friend. Voltaire, who was generally regarded as an infidel, lifted his hat. 'What!' the friend exclaimed, 'are you reconciled with God?' And Voltaire with fine irony replied: 'We salute, but we do not speak'."
I hate to admit it, but there have been times when that picture described my relationship with God. I've never ceased to believe that God exists; I've consistently seen so much that points to his reality. Yet I've not always maintained a real relationship with God. There's never been a time that I didn't salute; but I've not always spoken to Him.
I need to "salute." I also need to speak to God. You too:
Lord, our Father and friend. At the beginning of a week filled with reponsibilities and busy-ness, we stop to confess afresh that you are God, the maker of heaven and earth, the creator of all that exists, our savior, redeemer, and friend. We could never have concieved of a God like you; we thank you that you have chosen to come and reveal yourself to us in the person of your Son, Jesus!
Lord, for those times when we have failed to reflect your holiness and goodness, we're sorry. We ask you to forgive us, and thank you for continuing to be patient with us.
Help us, Lord, to be more responsive to your direction. Help us to be more obedient to you. And help us to love, receive, and be patient with the people around us. We know that they need your grace too. Guide our words and actions, so that they'll know that grace is here.
For people who are near us and who need your special care--and for those millions we don't know--we ask your special blessings. Please grant that all of us will seek and find and know you. We want to love you and rejoice in you. Lead us into that life, dear God.
We give you all praise and we ask for these blessings in the name of Jesus, your Son and our Savior. Amen.