A Nocturnal Prayer

Monday, January 13, 2014

There's a beautiful nighttime prayer that I want to share with you.  I've been reading it with my boys at bedtime.  I discovered it in author Candy Paull's sweet treasure of a book, Christmas Abundance ("From the Book of Common Prayer").  I just think you might like it because it's a simple prayer that quiets our minds as the dark, inky sky enfolds us under our warm blankets before we close out our day...

O Lord, support us all the day long, until the shadows lengthen
and the 
evening comes, and the busy world is hushed,
and the fever of life is over, and our work is done.
Then in thy mercy grant us a safe lodging, and a holy rest,
and peace at the last.

I love the part that says, "and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over, and our work is done."  It reminds me of our classic childhood favorite with its mood and cadence, Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown--

Goodnight comb 
And goodnight brush 
Goodnight nobody 
Goodnight mush 
And goodnight to the old lady whispering “hush” 
Goodnight stars 
Goodnight air 
Good night noises everywhere

We must have read Goodnight Moon a billion times when the boys were babies, and it never got old.  I am also reminded of Mary Anne Radmacher's quote, “Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow.”  I love this.  We do our best during the daytime.  Sometimes we mess up and have a droopy headed Charlie Brown kind of day, and sometimes we have a glittery ticker tape parade kind of day, and we're dancing with abandon down the street.  The only thing left to do when the stars claim their seats in the universe is rest and trust and sigh and be grateful.

And as I finish up the bedtime prayer with my young men, they begin to yawn and succumb to their sleepiness.  I can just feel all of their limbs becoming heavy as I continue.  I think they get the prayer...  Goodnight to you, beauties.


  1. How lovely! Although I read this in the morning, I felt the hushed calm that the end of the day will bring. Thank you for sharing this!

    1. Thank you, Melinda! I hope that the prayer will also bring you to a hushed and peaceful place :) I want to just frame the words and hang it on the wall so that I don't have to keep grabbing the book. For as often as we read it, I'm sure we'll know it by hear soon enough. Thanks for stopping by, come again!

  2. So beautiful and reflective Charmaine... the prayer instantly quiets my mind. I can imagine your boys falling deeply and peacefully asleep after your reading it. I'll have to remember it for my little guys when they get older... bonne nuit :)

    1. Thank you, Catherine. I hope that you will keep this prayer in your arsenal for those busy days--especially upon your move to beautiful Paris! Bon voyage, my friend!


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