O Shepherd of Israel, Who dost neither slumber nor sleep, we are
the people of Thy pasture and the sheep of Thy hand. Enfold us safely
in Thy love. And if in our grief and loneliness and moments of desolation,
we should stray from following Thee, O leave us not, faithful Shepherd,
but draw us near unto Thee.
As we face the great mystery of death which called away this our
dear friend from our earthly abode, we feel our frailty, our weakness.
We do not understand the brevity of life: we cannot understand why
such pain and anguish of heart and mind are visited upon those we
Make us not despair, Eternal Father; we are called by Thy Name,
we are Thine, Thou hast set thoughts of Thee in our hearts, though
we; creatures of flesh and blood, can but dimly apprehend Thy purposes.
Teach us not to neglect the task of today because we cannot see
its eternal effect. O teach us to number our days that we may apply
our hearts to wisdom; to lengthen our brief life by intensity of
living; to fill swift hours with worthy deeds.
Besides the still waters, through the green pastures, and in the
valley where dark shadows lie, be Thou our strength and shield,
and may we find Thy rod and Thy staff a stay and comfort to us in
the days that lie ahead. Amen.
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