New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.


Today’s Reflection

Note: This week’s New Every Morning reflections are structured differently to follow the format of our featured title, Rally: Communal Prayers for Lovers of Jesus and Justice, which addresses issues of social justice through reflection and over 50 call-and-response prayers known as litanies.

Many millennials have been unwilling to accept the choice offered to them between progressive politics and orthodox faith. Many younger Christians see this false dichotomy not only as a challenge to their public witness but also as an impediment to their practice of faith itself. When slaveholders in the nineteenth century argued against abolition, they used the Bible to do it. But their lies not only hurt the people who were enslaved but also divided the church in America and distorted the spirituality of those who were taught that the Bible allowed some people to own other people.

—Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove with Britney Winn Lee, Rally: Communal Prayers for Lovers of Jesus and Justice (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today’s Question

How has your public witness been influenced by the Bible and the people around you? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,” and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.
—James 2:15-17 (NRSV)

Today’s Litany

ONE: Jesus, we confess that we have inherited a faith that was used to justify
the theft of native lands and the enslavement of Black bodies. From this,
our original sin, we ask for deliverance.
ALL: Forgive us for where we have failed to understand, Lord, and in your
mercy, set us free.

ONE: Touch hearts that have been shriveled by generations of suppressed
empathy and eyes that have lost the ability to see siblings who suffer from
systemic injustice.
ALL: Forgive us for where we have failed to understand, Lord, and in your
mercy, set us free.

ONE: Grant us courage to renounce the false teaching that we can somehow
know you without being committed to justice for all people.
ALL: Forgive us for where we have failed to understand, Lord, and in your
mercy, set us free.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

The final litany from Rally was written by Britney Winn Lee in the beginning days of the global pandemic. This prayer reminds us that hope endures; goodness prevails; people surprise us; and love cannot, has not, will not fail. Watch and listen.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.


  • robert moeller Posted May 15, 2021 5:35 am

    I believe, having looked at the New Testament, that the message of love Jesus exemplified means everyone is included. Love your neighbor as yourself. A busy next few days with pastor transition training,, worship, a transition team meeting, and Bible study all on ZOOM, Weather warming up, have some projects to help keep us cool in the works too. Meeting friends for lunch. Working on counseling homework. Hope you all have a blessed weekend with family and friends, are safe, and health / well-being needs are met. Thank You, Lord.

  • Julie Posted May 15, 2021 8:15 am

    Because of the lessons of the Bible and my faith, I beleive we are all God’s children, all brothers and sisters in Christ, and all loved and beloved. I believe we are all worthy of justice and equality in one another’s eyes and lives and hearts.
    Prayers for Lou’s safe travel and a warm and wonderful visit with her daughter. Thank you , Lou, for your suggestion. As I wrote the scripture in my prayers journal I felt calmer. I also repeat God’s words to Johua every morning. Be strong and courageous because I, your God, am with you. Be strong and courageous because I, your Lord, will be with you. Be strong and courageous because I, your Lord, will go before you and vanquish your foes! Helps me get through the day. Prayers for Robert and Erich and their relationship. Prayers for Jill and Larry as they golf and garden may they share and grow. Prayers for Ally’s job prospects and her and David’s health. Prayers for all of the UR. You are welcomed and among friends. Thanks to the administrators for their work to make this wonderful community possible.

  • Jill Posted May 15, 2021 11:15 am

    Surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses…I have been so fortunate to have true Christianity demonstrated to me and continue to watch and learn from those around me. Selfless love, patient care, unconditional compassion. I am grateful and hope I am part of the great chain passing it on.
    Well- the two vaccines have completely wiped me out. My arms are very sore and I feel like I have the flu. I cancelled plans for tennis today and hope to just nap the day away. I didn’t sleep well, because I was waking up a lot, because I was moving in my sleep. I keep applying heat and have been taking some over the counter meds to help with the achiness. I am grateful to have a low key day on the couch and hopefully bounce back tomorrow – so I can help dad plant his flowers. I am grateful for the vaccines and this momentary discomfort is worth the protection in the future. Maybe I will feel up to grading some later in the day.

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