A Guide for Daily Prayer and Meditation

Introduction and Orientation

The book of Psalms starts with this promise:

Blessed is the man
    who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
    nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
    and on his law he meditates day and night.

He is like a tree
    planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
    and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers. (Psalm 1:1-3)

Zion produces A Guide to Daily Prayer and Meditation[1]  each week to help train our members to delight in the Lord’s Word and meditate on it night and day. The Lord’s Word is our treasure (Ps 19:10), our joy (Ps 119:111), our light and salvation (Ps 119:105). It gives us wisdom (Ps 119:98) and peace (Ps 119:165) and all the treasures of heaven. The Lord’s Word also informs our prayers. Our sinful nature does not know how to believe in God, and so it does not know how to pray or meditate on the Scriptures. These things are taught to us by the Lord Himself. The disciples asked Jesus, “Lord, teach us to pray,” (Luke 11:1), and we ask the same thing, that the Lord would make us His students, that He would open our hears to hear His Word, and open our lips to “make our requests known to Him” (Philippians 4:6). 

The Lord meets us where we are with His Word whether His Word is new or familiar to us. The guide is intended to be flexible enough for you and or your family to use how and when you can. We want it to enhance your devotional life as you daily examine, and are examined by, the Word of God, then respond in prayer to the heavenly Father. If your situation does not allow you to follow the full guide, then just select a portion to read and meditate on.

If you do not already have habits for daily devotions, set aside some time every day, even if it is just a few minutes, and pray for the Lord’s help. If you already have a routine, this guide might enhance it. 

Sticking with the tried and true, the guide follows the “Morning” and “Close of the Day” services from our hymnal. It includes scripture readings from “The Daily Lectionary”[2], the Verse and Collect for the week from Sunday’s service, instruction from Luther’s Small and Large Catechisms, our congregation’s “hymn of the month”, and people for whom prayer has been requested.

Rather than everyone doing their own thing, we can meditate on and discuss the same scripture texts with our families and fellow members (as well as Lutherans around the world) as we walk together as the body of Christ. To facilitate the discussion, the verse of the week is taught in Sunday morning Bible class and lessons from the guide are often elaborated on at Wednesday evening services.

As you spend time in prayer and meditation on the text and lessons in the guide, you are encouraged to note any questions you have or observations you make and bring those to Pastor Thomas for discussion or clarification. 

[1] A Guide for Daily Prayer and Meditation is printed as a bulletin insert each Sunday and posted at zionlcmscf.org under the “Daily Prayer and Meditation” tab.

[2] “The Daily Lectionary” presents a continuous reading through the books of the Bible, often associating certain books with particular seasons of the Church Year. This is the same lectionary as found in the Lutheran Service Book and Treasury of Daily Prayer by Concordia Publishing House. Under this plan, nearly all of the New Testament and approximately one-third of the Old Testament are read each year.