Praying with Karl Barth
Lord, our God, our Father, through your Son, who became our brother, you call out to us: Return again, children of men! Lift up your hearts! Seek what is above! So, you have called us together on this morning. And here we are, each one of us with a life that does not belong to us, but to you, a life that is completely in your hand; each of us with our small and great sins, for which there is forgiveness only in you; each of us with our concerns, which only you can transform into joy. Yet each of us also has our own, quiet hope, that you may show yourself to be our almighty, good, and gracious God.
We know that one thing only can please you and give honor: to earnestly ask for your Spirit, earnestly seek your truth, and earnestly desire your presence and your direction. But we know that even this can be only your work in us. Lord, awaken us, that we may be awake!
So grant that in this hour all may happen properly: our prayer and singing, our speaking and hearing, and our celebration of Holy Communion. Grant this to all who this day desire to celebrate together the ascension of our Lord, Jesus Christ; also to the sick people in the hospitals, the confused people, and the many, many people who perhaps simply do not know that in truth, they also are imprisoned, sick and confused, and perhaps cannot yet hear that you are their comfort, their confidence, and their Savior. Let a light shine on them, and on all us as well, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
From Fifty Prayers by Karl Barth