Liturgies for Wholeness

60 Prayers to Encounter the Depth, Creativity, and Friendship of God in Ordinary Moments

Hardcover

February 20, 2024 | ISBN 9780593442821

Ebook

February 20, 2024 | ISBN 9780593442838

About the Book

Sixty modern and inspiring liturgies that offer compassionate insight to nurture your soul, from the bestselling authors of Liturgies for Hope.

“A voice of reassurance and a much needed reminder of the hope we have.”—Joshua Luke Smith, performing artist, pastor, and author


What if my current life is preparing me for something I can’t see?
Oh God, when I feel overlooked and forgotten,
when I ache to be important,
redirect my heart to You who remembers me.

When your spirit is restless and you can’t find the words, these modern-day liturgies help you articulate your brokenness to the God who calls you beloved.

The lyrical prayers in Liturgies for Wholeness name our longings—the ache for physical rest, the grief over something we never had, the desire for healing in a relationship—even as they call us to notice the blessing of washing our face and watching nightfall and sink deep into an awareness of God’s presence.

Divided into eight sections—including Mind, Senses, Body, Home, and Community—these liturgies can be read communally or individually to bring you into greater intimacy with God. Each prayer includes related Scripture references to offer you further opportunity for meditation and reflection.

With each liturgy in Liturgies for Wholeness, may you sense God’s deep desire for you and may you delight in the only One who can make you whole.
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Praise for Liturgies for Wholeness

“In the throes of a trial, words can fail us. And in the mundanity of simple routines, we can forget their importance. Liturgies for Wholeness is a lifeline for those praying in the day-to-day and the turbulent. Elledge and Moore generously share their poetic prayers, which have helped me pause, reflect, and praise. I’m keeping my copy close.”—Lauren Windle, public speaker and author of Notes On Love and Notes On Feminism

“We live in a time where the secular-sacred divide has been rightly problematized. This book is one very important contribution to curing the sickly dualism at the heart of our culture, which sees the body and spirit, mind and heart, and the sacred and secular as distinct, unconnected realities. In Liturgies for Wholeness, the healing power of tearing down such a harmful divide has formed these everyday liturgies that reveal the extraordinary miracle of each ordinary moment. This book is a must-have for deepening one’s contemplative attention of God by bringing prayerful integration to these nefarious dualisms that wrongfully control our lives and culture.”—Dr. David Bennett, Oxford academic, theologian, and author of A War of Loves

“I was a massive fan of Liturgies for Hope, and Liturgies for Wholeness is the perfect companion to it! Often I find myself searching for the words that bring language to what I’m experiencing but are also laced with the hope and truth of Scripture. Elledge and Moore have once again managed to marry both of those in the most beautiful way! This book has enhanced my prayer life in so many ways, and I have already bought copies for everyone I know. Become good friends with the table of contents so you can find a liturgy for the exact moment you need it or for when you want to send encouragement to someone else.”—Meghan Ryan Asbury, author of You Are Not Behind

Liturgies for Wholeness takes the aches of my heart, pins them to grace, and spirals them back out with love to the world. Prayer is meant to be earthed in the ordinary, and the unexpected invitation to prayer—in my imperfections, my hours, my naps, and my haircuts—expands my language and longings. Make this book your companion in the daily journey toward wholeness in the presence of God.”—Sarah Yardley, author of More > Change and mission lead of Creation Fest UK

“Elledge and Moore have done it again. They have waded into the waters of our shared experiences and said the unsayable. They have named the shadows and the light, and they have given us words, in such rich and poetic fashion, for when we don’t have them. This book has become a staple in our home, a voice of reassurance and a much needed reminder of the hope we have. Bravo, my friends!”—Joshua Luke Smith, performing artist, pastor, and author
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Excerpt

Liturgies for Wholeness

A Note on Liturgy

Perhaps liturgy is a new word for you. Maybe you grew up in a tradition that practiced liturgy, but it feels irrelevant and outdated now. Or maybe liturgy, with its rootedness and sacraments, is something you have only recently longed for.

Historically, liturgical prayer refers to responsive, communal prayer that is usually repeated in a worship service to direct people toward God. By repeating words based on Scripture—which has been spoken by all sorts of people throughout history—liturgical prayer invites us into rich communion with both God and generations of worshippers who came before us. Liturgy reminds us that we are not alone—our stories are woven together with the stories of others who have repeated the same words and who have reached for God in their pain and joy.

Formation is at the heart of liturgy. Through liturgy, we learn the practices and rhythms of faith that shape our hearts, minds, desires, convictions, and whole selves. Liturgy forms us in the way of Jesus, which is to say, it forms us into the people we are meant to be.

In this book, when we use the word liturgy, we are referring to an original, pre-written prayer based on the comfort, truth, and wonder found in Scripture. We believe our daily lives present us with an opportunity to participate in liturgy, so we put words to some common experiences—washing our face, grocery shopping, napping, dancing—all through which we can encounter the Divine. You’ll also find prayers to guide you through life’s highs and lows: falling in love, healing a broken heart, receiving a diagnosis, overthinking, forgiving.

If you’re at a loss for words, need fresh inspiration, or just feel exhausted, we pray these liturgies provide a steady, comforting framework for your own prayers. We wrote these liturgies to give language to the wonder and wrestling in your mind, body, heart, and soul. And we hope these liturgies invite you into a community of people praying the same words, anchored in the knowledge that God sees us and calls us beloved.


How to Use This Book

We are all beginners when it comes to prayer.

If you’ve never prayed a day in your life, you are welcome here. If prayer is a part of your daily spiritual practice, you are welcome here. If you’ve picked up this book seeking nourishment through prayer—welcome. In these pages, you’ll find liturgies to orient your entire being toward wholeness. By addressing topics that pertain to the mind, the senses, the body, the heart, and the soul, as well as our homes, communities, and world, these prayers aim to bring all the parts of ourselves to God.

This book will live best on your nightstand, in your backpack, or on the passenger seat of your car—available to be picked up as needed. While you could read this book cover to cover, we hope you frequently scan the table of contents and find language that speaks to what you, a friend, or a loved one is going through. Feel free to use these liturgies individually, in the quiet of your room or in the chaos of your life, as well as corporately, reciting them as a community with the intention of being collectively formed. 

As you read one liturgy at a time, take a deep breath. Read each line slowly and thoughtfully. Allow every word to land softly on your heart. Speak them directly to God and resolve to be fully honest with Him. Hope more wildly than you’ve ever dared to before and listen quietly for the Father’s encouraging response.

At the end of each liturgy, you’ll find Scripture references that inspired these prayers. We encourage you to spend additional time with these verses on your own and ask what the Holy Spirit may be speaking to you through His Word. And as you engage in ongoing conversation with God, may your prayers transcend words, leading you into constant communion with your Maker and continual nearness to His presence.

Above all, as you read and pray, may God remind you that He is kind, gracious, beautiful, and good. May you sense, deep in your soul, that He longs to hear from you, no matter how fractured you may feel. If the pursuit of wholeness begins with brokenness, then may we come to the feet of Jesus together, free and open with our imperfections, examining what needs repair and looking beyond ourselves to the only One who can make us whole.

About the Author

Audrey Elledge
Audrey Elledge is an author and editor in New York, where she works by day at SparkNotes. She has won the Academy of American Poets Prize and the Virginia Beall Ball Prize. Elledge co-authored her first book, Liturgies for Hope, with Elizabeth Moore. More by Audrey Elledge
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About the Author

Elizabeth Moore
Elizabeth Moore lives in New York, where she works at Ad Age. She co-authored her first book, Liturgies for Hope, with Audrey Elledge. More by Elizabeth Moore
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