Intentions of Experience This Day

1. Experience This Day Just As It Is

The intention of this chant is to be truly present in the moment. Life can be joyful at times, or rough at times. As long as we are facing the day with a clean mind, and are not afraid to face challenges, we have the ability to live life as it is intended. Bad days do not need to be “corrected”, they can be lived through.  (Inspired by NA’s “Just for Today”)

2. Create Within Me a Pure Heart

“Create within me a pure heart, Oh God and renew within me a steadfast spirit.” (Psalm 51:10)

This verse from Psalm 51 carries the intention of a brand new beginning, a return to innocence, a clean start.

3. Serenity Prayer

“God, grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change, and courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

This powerful prayer, written by Reinhold Niebuhr is a cornerstone of recovery literature, and is a brilliant formula for dealing with the stress of life.

A. In accepting what I cannot change, I recognize that I have to find peace right now, even though some things are not the way I want them to be. Any actions that I take will only cause me churn and stress.

B. I also have to devote my power to changing those things that are possible to be changed, to not dwell in a feeling of helplessness.

C. The toughest part is the power of discernment – to know when to accept and when to act.

With this chant, I ask God to help guide me through this journey, one day at a time.

4. We Will Comprehend the Word Serenity (and we will know peace)

This phrase comes from the AA “Promises” and is one of the 12 beautiful promises that is described in the book “Alcoholics Anonymous” as part of the 9th Step. It describes the peace that is felt when we make amends to those in our lives whom we have harmed.

5. 7th Step Prayer

“Creator, I am now ready for you to have all of me, light and dark. I pray for your help to transform every single character defect into a character strength. Grant me strength as I go forward, grant me courage to walk me path. Amen.” (From the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.)

6. Help Me To Learn From My Mistakes (Teach me to live my life better each day)

Inspired by text from from the NA “Just For Today” book, this simple phrase encourages us to grow from our missteps, not to beat ourselves up, but to move forward in our wisdom. .

7. God, I Called To You for Help and You Healed Me  (You brought me up from the bottom of my despair)

Part of the beauty of this simple phrase from Psalm 30:2 is that it speaks of healing in the past tense. We are remembering our lowest point, our darkest “bottom” and thanking God for delivering us out of that darkness. Part of generating gratitude and healing, is the memory of this darkness. The upbeat nature of this chant helps us to not dwell on the darkness.

8. My Cup Overflows

This English version of Rabbi Shefa Gold’s beautiful Kosi R’vaya (from the CD “Chanscendence”) from Psalm 23:5, puts us in touch with the abundance of life. Rabbi Shefa says “One cup is located in the heart. It is the connection to the source of Life and Love within us, and no matter what befalls us, or what “enemy” faces us from across the table, that inner cup continues to flow and to overflow.”

9. Be Still and Know Your Higher Power

“Be still and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10)

Usually we think of prayer as consisting of words or songs directed to God. But the silence is equally important, as it allows the space for the conversation to be 2-way.

With this chant, we set the intention for stillness and silence. This stillness is a place that can be difficult to reach for so many of us, but is so vital to be open to receive what the universe holds.

10. Turn It Over to Your Higher Power

The intention of this chant is to be comforted by the wisdom that we can always turn the hugeness of any situation over to our higher power. We do not need to take on the world by ourselves.

11. Be Kind to Yourself

Be Kind to yourself, take a moment to see just how far you’ve come, be gentle, be kind to yourself.

How easy it is to be down on ourselves! I can fall easily into habits of negativity, and self-doubt. The inner-critic never rests.

With this chant, I remind myself to be kind and gentle to myself, and give myself credit, even for a short moment for all of the wonderful things I’ve done to bring myself to this current moment.

12. I Will Give Freely the Love I Received

The intention of this chant is to simply feel the gratitude that has come our way, and to try to return it to others, without reservation and without limit. (From NA’s “Just for Today”)

13. Strengthen Me God Just One More Time

These powerful words from Judges 16:28 are from the story of Samson. Samson is asking God for just enough strength to destroy the temple and take down the Philistines. As a chant practice, we can think about how huge life can be at times. If we try to take on the whole world, we will feel overwhelmed. But if we ask for just enough strength to get through this current moment, this day, that may feel manageable. By breaking our life down into smaller pieces, we can get through the difficult times.

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