Kol ha-o-lam ku-lo gesher tzar me'od
V'ha-i-kar lo l'fached klal
The whole world is a very narrow bridge;
the important thing is not to be afraid.
-Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav
It is never too late
To start over again,
To feel again
To love again
To hope again…
(Adapted from Rabbi Harold Schulweis' "It is Never Too Late")
It is written: "God is my refuge and my strength, a very present help in time of trouble" (Psalm 46:1). Help us to feel that help. Let Your presence be a light within to dispel the darkness. Let Your nearness, Your silent speech within the heart, be a comfort to us.
We pray for the courage to carry on in the face of disappointment, for the wisdom to learn from adversity, for the strength to build a new and better life. Your spirit can transform affliction into salvation; enlighten us, therefore, that we may look to the dawn of a new day with confidence and trust. May hope abide beyond the moment's loss. For You, O God of hope, are our sustaining power, even when we have fallen. Keep us from self-recrimination. Give us peace of mind and contentment of spirit. Amen.
We come to you, O God, for Your gracious help. You dwell within our hearts, You feel our distress, You know our pain and how burdened we are. Give us strength to bear our burdens with courage, wisdom, and grace. Help us to be true to our better selves, to discern our real work in life, and to do it with all our might. When we struggle within our own hearts, stay by our side. Then we shall be able to say with Your prophet (Isaiah 40:31): But those who hold fast to the Eternal shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
May our work, and the ties that bind us to family and friends, make life rich in meaning for us, so that each day we live may be yet another step leading us nearer to You. Amen.
(Adapted from On the Doorposts of Your House, CCAR)
I have called on Your name, O [God],
From the depths of the Pit.
Hear my plea;
Do not shut Your ear
To my groan, to my cry!
- Lamentations 3:55-56