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

The truth is that we are more than our thoughts. Thoughts can be helpful, but ultimately our thoughts change from day to day, or even from moment to moment. When we think about past regrets or worry about the future, we miss the present moment—the only moment in which we truly can be alive. Yet, we can train our minds in the same way that we train the muscles in our bodies. With training, we can notice our thoughts without allowing them to rob us of our present-moment awareness. With training, we can find amazing freedom to focus on what is truly important to us.

—Sarah E. Bollinger and Angela R. Olsen, The Awakened Life for High School Students: Finding Stillness in an Anxious World, Leader Guide (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today’s Question

How might you show kindness and compassion to yourself when you recognize your own negative thought patterns? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
—Philippians 4:8 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

When I am full of worry, awaken me.
When I feel isolated, awaken me.
When I am afraid, awaken me.
God of love and compassion, awaken me. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

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Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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


  • robert moeller Posted August 25, 2020 5:18 am

    For me this is a complicated question. I can’t quickly and easily give a reply. I’m thankful that God is with me always and if I turn to God, trust in God, all will be well.

    Prayers for Jill, her Dad, friends with serious illnesses, the opening of the school year.

    Prayers for Julie and Megan that the future holds greater promise. Be safe,

    Prayers for the UR family, known and unnamed, You are missed, thought of, and in my heart.
    Be well, safe and secure, in the loving arms of God, the Father, Jesus, the Son, and the Holy Spirit now and always. Thank You, Lord.

  • Jill Posted August 25, 2020 5:21 am

    By the grace of God, this is an area that has seen significant growth over time. I used to be controlled by thoughts, which were not productive. Now, I am able to much more quickly recognize thoughts which are pulling me in the wrong direction and, with the aid of The Spirit, re-direct the negative energy and thought patterns. It was all of Him and in His timing. I marvel at the difference.
    I don’t know that is it as much showing kindness and compassion to myself, as it is acknowledging my gratitude to God.
    Dad played golf with his buddies yesterday and enjoyed it and played well. He sounded happy, which is good for my soul. We are planning on having dinner outside at a very nice restaurant on Thursday. Each year my dad prepares my taxes and this is his “tax meal” payback. We both really like this restaurant. It is where my sister and I surprised mom and dad for their 60th anniversary, with just a small gathering of family.

  • Julie Posted August 25, 2020 8:29 am

    The first time I saw the entire Serenity Prayer the line “enjoy one moment at a time” leaped out at me. I have tried to internalize this concept. It is more difficult of late but I recognize my need is greater and work to emulate this important outlook.
    Prayers for Robert, his family, friends and loved ones with health issues.
    Prayers for Jill and her students and family. I pray her father’s spirits remain high during the coming months and years.
    My lawyer told me to call the police shoud h’s “friend” ever come to the house again. I told her I was afraid and felt threatened and she assured me that my and Megan’s safety is paramount.
    Prayers, thank you and stay well dear UR

  • Ally Posted August 25, 2020 12:15 pm

    Good morning UR family, I missed you during the days without computer access. I have been working with offenders for almost 4 years, using cognitive behavioral therapy. The premise is that if you can change your thoughts, you can change your behaviors. My guys often struggle with negative thinking patterns. It is a struggle for me as well. I sometimes lie awake at night worrying about the pandemic, the direction our nation has taken, my husband’s recovery, my job, etc. It is hard for me to stay positive. One thing that helps me is positive self-talk. When negative thoughts invade, I try to reframe them in a positive way or try to see the positive side of what I worry about. For example, I try to focus on how far David has come in his recovery. His recovery is miraculous! Our family, friends, and church family have been so supportive through our tough times, David and his oldest daughter are rebuilding their relationship. There are good things despite a world in chaos. I do need to treat myself with more compassion. I need to eat healthier, exercise more, and spend more time doing things i enjoy, like Bible journaling, singing, playing piano and guitar, and decorating my house. I will give myself grace.
    David is progressing in many ways, but has been diagnosed with restless legs syndrome. He is taking a new medication for this, but one side effect is unsteadiness. Pray that this resolves, because the new med is helping with his symptoms.
    Robert, Thank you for the reminder that with Jesus, all will be well. I needed that today. Jill, prayers continue as you prepare for this different school year. I pray it is full of learning and joy. Praying for safety for teachers and students. Praying your dad’s lifted spirits continue. Enjoy your dinner out! Julie, I lift you and Megan up and ask God to surround you with his angels. I will pray Psalm 121 over you. Praying that you feel God’s peace in the midst of turmoil. I thank all of you for being here over the last months. God has used you mightily to help me get through. Lifting our UR family up and praying that we are good to ourselves and that the joy of the Lord will be our strength. Be blessed!

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