Psalm 104 adapted by Nan C. Merrill in Psalms for Praying
O give thanks to the Beloved,
and open your hearts to Love.
Awaken! Listen in silence
for the Voice of the counselor.
sing praises with a glad heart
and give witness to the truth with your lives.
Glory in the radiance of the Beloved;
let the hearts of those who call upon You rejoice!
Seek the One who is Life, your strength,
walk harmoniously in Love's Presence!
Remember that you are not alone,
for through Love doubt and fear are released;
O people of the earth, ever bear in mind
the unity of diversity in the Divine Plan!
You are the Promise of our wholeness,
You await our readiness
to choose Life.
Your covenant of Love stands firm
through all the ages;
You forgive us when we stray
far from Home.
Help us to learn to trust You,
to untangle the webs of illusion
we have made.
As we sift through our dreams,
guide us to the only Dream
that brings peace -
knowing we belong to You.
Give us wisdom and courage
to release all that binds us;
for to face what is built on illusion
is to find new life.
O Divine Presence, as we surrender
our hearts to You,
teach us to be worthy of trust.
O, that what we think and speak
might be in accord with our
that our faces might shine with openness,
reflecting integrity and honesty within,
that we would choose to live in peace and harmony,
our decisions made in accordance with Love.
Upon the path of trust, O friends,
we need not judge others or ourselves,
for, as we reverence all life,
the beauty and unity of diversity will be seen.
As you have led through all generations,
through times of turmoil and war,
Guide us now, O Blessed One,
along the paths of peace.
May the people of all nations
break the bonds of fear-filled oppression;
may they bless one another with forgiveness.
Blessed be the One who lives and dwells among us!
Old Testament Reading
Genesis 29:15-30 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
Then Laban said to Jacob, “Because you are my kinsman, should you therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what shall your wages be?” Now Laban had two daughters; the name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. Leah’s eyes were lovely, and Rachel was graceful and beautiful. Jacob loved Rachel; so he said, “I will serve you seven years for your younger daughter Rachel.” Laban said, “It is better that I give her to you than that I should give her to any other man; stay with me.” So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed to him but a few days because of the love he had for her. Then Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife that I may go in to her, for my time is completed.” So Laban gathered together all the people of the place, and made a feast. But in the evening he took his daughter Leah and brought her to Jacob; and he went in to her. (Laban gave his maid Zilpah to his daughter Leah to be her maid.) When morning came, it was Leah! And Jacob said to Laban, “What is this you have done to me? Did I not serve with you for Rachel? Why then have you deceived me?” Laban said, “This is not done in our country—giving the younger before the firstborn. Complete the week of this one, and we will give you the other also in return for serving me another seven years.” Jacob did so, and completed her week; then Laban gave him his daughter Rachel as a wife. (Laban gave his maid Bilhah to his daughter Rachel to be her maid.) So Jacob went in to Rachel also, and he loved Rachel more than Leah. He served Laban for another seven years.