By The Reverend Dr. Katie Snipes Lancaster

I have not yet made the pilgrimage to the Isle of Iona, just about as far north as there is in Scotland, in the chilly rain where everything is stone and green and gray. It is a sacred pilgrimage, especially for Presbyterians, because of its ancient connection to Celtic spirituality and the early Christian influence in what we now call Scotland. It’s worth putting on your bucket list if you are a world traveler. I’ve been using the prayers of Iona for many years now, and this one in particular speaks to me because it seems to be for everyone everywhere, but with a specificity that allows us to be seen by God. Whether you are poor, proud, persecuted, privileged, it holds all of who we are or who we might become.

The prayer also reiterates over and over again: Christ is coming to make all things new. Isn’t that what we seek at our core? Christ to come and make all things new? New in the best kind of way, new in a renewed, grounded, peaceful, restful, enduring kind of way?

It seems a good place as any to end our 100 days of homegrown prayer: with hope, with a reminder that renewal is possible, grounded in the possibilities that Christ sets before us in the days ahead. This has certainly been my daily bread for the last 100 days, and I hope it has been for you, with these prayers from around the world, and across the centuries feeding my soul as we journeyed through a summer that was beyond different, and full of unexpected twists and turns. Thank you for being on this 100 day journey with me and I hope you will continue on with us as we move into a season of gratitude this fall. Look for a note from Jo Forrest on the new fall theme of gratitude and how to continue on in daily practices of nearness to God.

Let us pray:

I have been using this
Among the poor,
among the proud,
among the persecuted,
among the privileged,
Christ is coming to make all things new.
In the private house,
in the public place,
in the wedding feast,
in the judgement hall,
Christ is coming to make all things new.
With a gentle touch,
with an angry word,
with a clear conscience,
with burning love,
Christ is coming to make all things new.
That the kingdom might come,
that the world might believe,
that the powerful might stumble,
that the hidden might be seen,
Christ is coming to make all things new.
Within us, without us,
behind us, before us,
in this place, in every place,
for this time, for all time,
Christ is coming to make all things new.
—Iona Community, Wild Goose Publications

Grace and peace to you, our friends.

Thank you for the ongoing connection to this community of faith and raising prayers to God through the 100 Days of Homegrown Prayer.

At the conclusion of these 100 days, the daily devotional will continue with a new season focused on cultivating gratitude. Over the fall months, members of our church will author reflections of as aspect of their lives for which they are grateful. Your attention to these ideas may inspire your own list of thanks and prayer.

To subscribe, you do not need to do anything…we will continue to send you daily emails. If you are inspired to learn more or offer to write a devotion, information may be found here. 

Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7