Although I don’t pray nearly as often as I should, I remember my grandfather’s prayer before meals. I think these words will always be with me.
Dear heavenly father,
We thank you for our lives, for this food,
And for our many blessings.
Be with us during this meal,
And be with all of our loved ones.
I found these prayers on canvas, that I think are a nice touch in a home like ours where the prayers are in our hearts, but not always said aloud. (Okay, and I admit the Jesus and germs one is not a prayer, but it’s cute and I want it in our bathroom.)
Clockwise from top left:
Irish blessing, from the Sew Loved Shop; Bless the food before us, from Little Life Designs; Wash your hands, from LaceyFields; Children’s prayer, from KinderType.
I received this book the other day, Bless This Food: Ancient & Contemporary Graces from Around the World, which is filled with just that – beautiful family prayers and blessings rich in tradition from various cultures.
And while I’m not even going to think about Thanksgiving yet, fall is just around the corner and it’s a season that has a way of bringing families closer together and around the table for the comforts of a home cooked meal. So, although it’s 110 degrees here in Arizona and it’s hard to see the end of summer in sight, I’ll say one of these prayers tonight to wish the speedy return of nice weather when we can sleep with our windows open and go for long walks without being drenched in sweat in the first quarter mile.
“The occasional gathering for prayer, no matter how brief, keeps the heart and mind in touch with the most fundamental of joys: belonging,” says Bless This Food author, Adrian Butash. He selected prayers and blessings from all over the world, and from various religions and traditions, along with the work of great poets, thinkers and activists: Shakespeare, Milton, Gandhi and Mother Teresa, to name a few. Below is a sampling of some of these works: