Opening Prayers/Prayers of Adoration on Humility

Sermon Illustrations on Humility

O Lord Jesus Christ, enthroned in the majesty of heaven, who, when you came forth from God, did make yourself one that serves: We adore you because you did lay aside the garment of your  glory, and clothed yourself with all humility, and minister to your disciples, washing their feet. Teach us to know what you have done and to follow your example; deliver us from pride, jealousy and ambition, and make us ready to be subject one to another, and with humility to serve one another for your sake, O Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

Prayers for the Christian Year,  Language Adapted for Modern Worship by Stuart Strachan Jr.

Blessed Lord, who puts down the mighty from their seat and exalts those who have been humbled: Save us, we implore you, from pride and arrogance, from self-seeking and false ambition. Give us a humble and contrite spirit, that we may think less of ourselves, more of others, and most of all of you, who are our mighty God and Saviour; to whom with you and the Holy Spirit we ascribe all praise and glory, now and for evermore. 

Frank Colquhoun, Parish Prayers, Language adapted for Modern Worship by Stuart Strachan Jr.

Lord Jesus Christ, who when you were about to institute your holy Sacrament at the Last Supper washed the feet of the apostles, teach us by your example the grace of humility: Cleanse us, we beseech you, from all stain of sin, that we may be worthy recipients of your holy mysteries; who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end.

The Royal Maundy, Language Adapted for Modern Worship by Stuart Strachan Jr.

The Valley Of Vision

Lord, high and holy, meek and lowly,

Thou hast brought me to the valley of vision,

where I live in the depths but see thee in the heights;

hemmed in by mountains of sin I behold thy glory.

Let me learn by paradox

that the way down is the way up,

that to be low is to be high,

that the broken heart is the healed heart,

that the contrite spirit is the rejoicing spirit,

that the repenting soul is the victorious soul,

that to have nothing is to possess all,

that to bear the cross is to wear the crown,

that to give is to receive,

that the valley is the place of vision.

Lord, in the daytime stars can be seen from deepest wells,

and the deeper the wells the brighter thy stars shine;

Let me find thy light in my darkness,

thy life in my death,

thy joy in my sorrow,

thy grace in my sin,

thy riches in my poverty

thy glory in my valley.

The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions, The Banner of Truth, 1975.

Lord, you came to us when we least expected. We thought that all hope for humanity was lost, or that it was up to humanity to save ourselves or we would not be saved, or that some god or other would swoop down from the heavens and deliver us. Then you came to us in the dark of night, born to Mary and Joseph; you came to us as a baby. 

Lord, forgive us when we don’t see you because we look in the wrong places, or because you give us hope for your advent, or because we expect you to come in power, majesty, and glory rather than in humility, poverty, and meekness. Lord, help us to experience your birth among us. God with us. God with us not on our terms, but on your terms, as a baby, Jesus, a human one who took upon himself our humanity that we might be brought back to God. Amen.

Will Willimon’s Lectionary Sermon Resource: Year A Part 1, Abingdon Press, 2019.