New Book  now Available

        Here is an anthology of over 1100 brief prayers and thought-starters, for each day of the year, with almost 400 original prayers by Bruce Prewer.
        Included is both a subject index and an index of authors-- an ecumenical collection of about 300 different sources.
Prayers for Busy People
        Title:  Brief Prayers for Busy People.
          Author: Bruce D Prewer
        ISBN 978-1-62880-090-6
        Available from Australian Church Resources,
web site
        or by order from your local book shop
        or online on amazon.





Sunday 5


Matthew 5: 13-20                                 (Sermon 1: “You are more than you think!”

                                                                                                (Sermon 2: “Fulfilment.”)

1 Cor.2:1-12 (& 13-16)

Isaiah 58: 1-12

Psalm 112: 1-10




Who of us can comprehend the mind of God?

Only God’s own Spirit knows every thought.


Yet in Christ Jesus, the mind of God,

like a pure light, has illumined our dark world.


Light rises in the darkness for those who are true,

The Lord is gracious, merciful and righteous.


What no eye has seen, nor ear heard,

nor the mind of man conceived,

God has prepared for those who love him




Holy God, dearest Friend,

            you are the light of our seeing,

            the wisdom of our understanding,

            the delight of our loving.

Assist your people

            so to trust you that we may begin to understand you,

            so to understand you that we may better love you,

            and so to love you that we may more eagerly worship and serve you,


Through Jesus Christ, your very Mind incarnate;






God, through the prophet Isaiah, has required believers to practice what they preach. It is written:

This is the religion I choose:

            To cut the bonds of wickedness,

            to untie the ropes of the yoke,

            to set the oppressed free,

            to break every yoke,

            to share you bread with the hungry,

            and your house with the homeless.


My friends, if this is right religion, then we need constant repentance and renewal.


Let us pray together:

            God of truth, do not spare us your painful light, lest we perish in the darkness.

            God of hope, do not spare us your rebuke, les we perish in our complacency.

            God of mercy, do not spare us your forgiveness, lest we perish in our despair.

            God of abounding grace, do not spare us your healing, lest we perish in our ineptitude.


God of the saints and prophets, God our God, grant to each of us a genuine repentance, hearts open to your radical forgiveness, and faith restored to full strength, Through Christ Jesus our Saviour.





Fellow students in the school of Jesus, know this for certain: Christ is not only our tutor but our loving redeemer. Those who come to him in sincerity and truth shall never be cast away.

In his name I declare to you: Your sins are forgiven!


Thanks be to God!




Lord Jesus,

            you understand every person,

            both the good ones and the bad ones.


Please sort us out;

            make bad people good

            and good people nice.


In your name we pray.



PSALM 112: 1-10


            * Personal comment: I find this psalm tainted

            with the un-Jesus-like, Old Testament presumption

            that faithfulness will lead to riches and fame.

            I have tried to baptise it in the Spirit of Christ.


Praise the Eternal God!


Happy are those who are caught up in your awesome love,

who get a mighty kick out of doing your commandments.

These folk will be a blessing to the community,

a generation who put in far more than they take out.

Love and compassion will be in their houses,

and their legacy will endure forever.

They will find light in the darkness,

trusting the grace, mercy and truth of their God.


All is well when we live with open handed generosity,

and conduct our affairs with the justice of true love.

Our lives will then prove to be unshakeable,

and our influence will go on, long after we are gone.

By faith we will not be afraid of bad news,

there will be calm, deep down in our hearts;

peace in our hearts, casting out fear;

knowing that in the end evil will be vanquished.


The wicked shall angrily fight back in vain,

their boasting will come to nothing,

though they gnash their teeth they shall be no more.


Happy are those who share what they have with the poor,

such right-living will endure forever and ever,

and the trumpets of God will sound on the other side!

            `                                                                                                                                                                       B D Prewer 2006




Should Christ be incarnate today,

            where would he feast?

At lunch with premier or bishop,

            professor or priest?


Maybe we should investigate

            more likely places?

Like sharing a pie with street kids

            or hopeless cases?

Perhaps having a cheap pub lunch

            with a tanker crew,

or with some tattooed wharfies

            at a barbecue?


The friend of tax pimps, prodigals,

            call girls and sinners,

won’t be dining at the Hilton

            with this world’s winners!

                                                                                    Bruce D Prewer

                                                                                    from-: “Beyond Words”




God our holy Friend, though our human lamps may grow dim, grant that by your Holy Spirit

the light of Christ shall shine through us, that as we attempt to love as he has loved, the world may see our few good works and give glory to heaven. Through Christ Jesus our Saviour.





Matthew 5: 14


You are the light of the world.....A person does not light a lamp then cover it with a bucket. They place it on a lamp stand, where it can provide light to all in that house. Matthew 5: 14


You are the light of the world? Not physical light, but personal light; the light of faith, hope and love. The light of truth and compassion, justice and courage, sensitivity, mercy and forgiveness. The very light of God within you and radiating from you.  Christ’s epiphany enabling our epiphany.


You are the light of the world? Big call! Mega call!


There is no doubt about the shadows and the darkness that we encounter in the world around us, and sometimes within the fold of fundamentalist religions. There are a multitude of bewildered souls looking for some light.


That is where we are supposed to come in. The love of God in Christ Jesus, the very Light of Light, is intended to shine in and through our daily affairs. We are supposed to have this illuminated and illuminating quality.


Let your light so shine before others, that they may see your good deeds, and give glory to God in heaven.


Does it? Does the light shine?




I have no desire to harangue you for being slack Christians. I am not about to verbally beat you about the ears with accusations about our failure to be the light of the world. My purpose is not to sandpaper your guilt until you hurt. I am not trying to kick start you into freely doing more “Christ-ian things.”


You, like me, certainly have plenty of room for improvement. But I am not seeking to take you on a guilt trip. There is a much healthier and more faithful direction for me to take in this sermon.




Hear again what Jesus actually said to his followers: You are the light of the world.  You are.

You are now.  Not you could be, or should be. Not tidy up your act, stiffen your will power, and commence trying.  Not maybe in ten years time, nor if you work very hard perhaps by the end of the year.


Jesus did not say to his disciples “Now go off, learn these creeds, sign this mission statement, undertake these spiritual exercises, pray for two hours each day, read two chapters of the Bible each day, fast and mediate; then you will start to become the light of the world.


What our Lord said was more immediate, more a gob-smacking surprise. “By trusting the unexpected, unearnable, grace of God as it flows to you through my words and deeds, you are now the light of the world.”


 It is not our light but his light. Not by our strenuous efforts but by pure grace.


This Jesus must have been like pepper in the noses of the religious authorities in Israel. They taught: IF you keep all the laws and regulations of the Old Testament, and observe the additional by-laws that our rabbis have added for your own good, if you ritually wash and purify yourself each day, if you make the requisite sacrifices at the temple, and avoid any contact or fellowship with the despicable non-Jews, then.... must maybe, you may begin to be a little light in the darkness of the world.


Not so Jesus. His only requirement was to accept the free gift of love that God offers. Simply to come as you are. Just open your windows to the light and allow it to touch even the dusty corners of your heart and soul.  Then without any question, you will be the light of the world.

The light of God is a gift: a gift to be lovingly accepted, celebrated ,cherished and freely shared.




Did I overhear someone’s thoughts just now? And did those thoughts have an exclamation mark? Something like, “If we are the light of the world, then things are grim! God must be desperate!”


Dare you and I believe what Jesus says?


His words sound too easy, too simple, and too unrealistic, given what goes on in the human mind and soul.. He does not seem to take into account what shadowy, cunning, perverse and evasive little creatures we are. It seems too good to be true.


Dare we believe that simply by faith, by opening our hearts to Him, we have a new status, and actually become the light of the world?


Maybe one or two of you are busy arguing within your heads: “This preacher does not know me. Nor does he know most of these people whom I see sitting around this church today. Some of us are so far from being the light of the world that it would be outrageously funny, if it were not so desperately sad. If this pastor truly knew us, he would not go on waffling about us being the beacons of hope!”


How about this then? Perhaps I do know; maybe I know much more than you suppose? Perhaps I have a very reliable source of information. Inside information?


Before you rashly start to wonder who among this congregation has dobbed you in, I quickly explain that my sources are very close to me. In fact, they are here in the pulpit. I know about your inadequate discipleship because I know about mine.


Let’s face it: As Christians, most of us are more inept than we would like to be. Some have many doubts. Some have bad habits. Some have guilty secrets. Some rarely pray or read the Bible. Some can get sarcastic about spiritual matters. We can be trite, judgmental, arrogant, or just plain apathetic at times.


This includes those whom you have elected to be Elders, or members of Parish Council. It is in one sense ludicrous that a motley collection of sinners like us should be charged with making decisions about the direction of the church.  Also some of you choir members may, in your cynical moods, think it a big laugh that folk like you are entrusted with singing praises to the glory of God.


Dare we believe, even for one sentimental moment, that we are the light of the world?




Friends, take courage. It is not any silly claim of mine that I am repeating here. It is the claim of a unique person of whom it was said: “He knew what was in the heart of men.” As long as our lives remain open to his Spirit, we shall be, in spite of our confounded defects, the light of the world.


The tiny bits of faith, hope and love that the grace of God has sown in your mind and heart qualify you to be a bearer of the light of Christ Jesus.


For God’s sake, and for the sake of those around you, believe more in the gift. Please do not fall into the temptation to despise yourself and give up. It is God’s light, not your failings that count. Never yield to despair. Christ is always greater than your darkness. Christians like Peter, John, and Paul, Mary, Martha and Susanna; and other notable disciples, had their failures on a grand scale, yet they were indeed beacons in a dark world..


By the generous grace of Christ, they were the light of the world.




There is only one thing that can prevent the light of Christ from shining through us. That is if we choose to hide it.


To be a secret Christian is not a valid option. Share it or lose it. God does not withdraw the light, but we can cover it up. We have free will.


Should a man or woman cover it up, like a bucket over a candle, then the starved light will decline to a flicker, then degenerate to acrid smoke, smoulder a while and then grow cold


We must choose.


The grace of God comes undiluted and free. But, like that forsaken man hanging on the cross, grace is not impervious to human rejection.


You are the light of the world.....A person does not light a lamp then cover it with a bucket. They place it on a lamp stand, where it can provide light to all in that house. Matthew 5: 14


Let your light so shine before others, that they may see your good deeds, and give glory to God in heaven.




Matthew 5:17


Many people tell me they are looking for fulfilment. Jesus offered fill-fulment. But not in the egocentric way many of those around us try to employ.


Do not think for one moment think that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets. I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them. Matthew 5: 17



One of the difficulties that is raised when we consider what it means to be fulfilled as “righteous”people is captured in that delightful prayer of a child who asked her God;

            “Please make all the bad people good

              and all the good people nice.”


Not all very moral people or extremely religious people are very nice. Indeed, to be shut up with some of them for eternity would fit one of my definitions of hell.




            Although our Lord is suspected in some quarters of being “rather too permissive for our liking,” he never did trash goodness. He did not criticise Scribes ad Pharisees for the good things they did achieve. He upheld the religious and moral imperatives of Moses and the famous ethical prophets of the Old Testament.

            For certain I tell you this: Till heaven and earth pass away, not one comma or colon shall             be deleted from the law until it is all fulfilled.”


However, Jesus acutely knew that when people live scrupulously by rules and regulations, something can go wrong; some essential ingredient can go missing. Jesus confirms this when he declared;

Unless your goodness exceeds that of the Scribes and Pharisees, you shall never enter the kingdom of heaven.


Legalism has dangers. Good people can do the right deed for the wrong reason. What is more, legalism is at danger from the infection of self righteousness.


He was clearly wary of the addictions --oops, I mean “additions”--- that the Law of Moses had accrued over the centuries. He was ready to break legal sub clauses which his people had promulgated. In the eyes of the very good people, Jesus was prepared to do the “wrong thing for the right reason.”


For example, his attitude to Sabbath observance would have got him thrust into the stocks if he had lived in sixteenth century Scotland. The Man from Nazareth’s friendships with both non-Jews and with women must have scandalised the upright Pharisees of his time. He was, in their eyes, a dangerous gadfly to have around.


But let us get this in focus: When Jesus did some things that good people of his day were not supposed to do, it was not because he despised morality. It was because he was radically loyal to a higher cause. A higher cause which lay behind Old Testament ethics.




His higher cause was God. And his God was like a loving parent.  To lovingly fill-full the will of his loving God was top of the agenda, for Mary’s firstborn son.


He was not some “foot loose and fancy free” hedonist, cruising around the countryside and displaying that bumper sticker philosophy: “If it feels good, then do it.” Obedience to his loving God, as he practised true love towards the lost and the diseased, was his chief business.  He described this love-service of God as his true nourishment: “My meat is to do the will of the One who sent me.”


Behind the laws of Moses, behind the ethical teaching of the prophets, lay the loving desire of God for the welfare of his human children. Jesus went back to the roots of faith. He was genuinely radical. He was not teaching and practising anything that was less than the law, but was upholding a Love that preceded the law.


Jesus did not indiscriminately break Hebrew regulations for daily life. Yet he could declare about the Sabbath: “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”


There is an old anecdote about Jesus (not in the NT) which tells how Jesus and his disciples walked by a field where the farmer was making use of the recent blessing of rain by ploughing his fields ready for seeding. It was a Sabbath day. Jesus called the farmer too him and said:

            If you understand what you are doing,

                        blessed are you and a true son of Abraham.

.           But if you do not know what you are doing,

                        then cursed are you and a son of perdition.




Jesus went back to the roots. He pushed people beyond legalistic morality, or self-centred religion, to their relationship with God, and with their neighbours. He always spelt out his business in terms of love. Love is the root of the matter.


Not love as some feeling. Love as a full-on, no-holds-barred, commitment to God and to other people, especially to the neglected or abused people. Love is a commitment to the highest form of relationship. It is a method of living which goes back to ultimate goals. His love was inclusive not exclusive. His way left no corner of life untouched.


Legalistic morality leaves numerous loopholes. Love leaves none. Legalistic religion can foster pride. Love fosters humility. Love leads to genuine godliness rather than to self righteousness.  Love stretches us to go beyond where others have gone before. Love can make good people very nice indeed.




Jesus did not come to denounce, or make light of, the Law of Moses. A community living by the morality of the Ten Commandments will cause less damage than a society where “Every person does what is right in their own eyes.” But it is not enough.


Jesus came that we might fulfil and become fulfilled. He did arrive to denounce the high codes of the Old Testament. He came to we might better live with the Mind that lay behind those codes.


Often I like to change words around in an attempt to get at their meaning afresh.  Sometimes I prefer to change “fulfilled” to “fill-fulled.”


As we shall read in the Gospel set for next Sunday, Jesus takes us back to trust and adore that Holy “Fill-Fuller” who “makes his sun to rise on both evil and good people, and sends his rain on both the unjust and the unjust.”


He came to introduce us the outflow of God’s indiscriminate, saving grace; that grace which precedes and succeeds the law; that grace which makes us fill-fulled with love, peace and joy.




Let us give thanks for our creation and redemption.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For the ineffable Mind that said: “Yes. We will have a universe with billions of stars and planets, including one small planet whose final inhabitants will one day name Earth.”

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For the mothering Spirit that caused life to begin, taking on many forms, age after age transcending itself in beauty and ingenuity.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For the Living Word who said: “Let us make humanity in our own likeness, male and female let us make them, and let them be our stewards upon planet earth.”

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For the caring God who called to tribes of Semites named the Hebrews, and took them on a long journey towards belief, justice and mercy.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For the truest Hebrew who ever lived, Jesus of Nazareth, genuinely the child of humanity, genuinely the Child of God?

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For his charismatic gifts, his embracing love for the unlovely, for his life freely given on a cross, and his resurrection on the third day.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For the men and women who were his friends and apostles, for their impact on the world, and the long train of witnesses who succeeded them, even to this day.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.



For the Spirit who though Jesus calls us today, for those who teach us, challenge, us comfort us, and who walk beside us on the journey of faith.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


For those who have gone on ahead; those whom we tenderly remember, many we have forgotten, who wait to welcome us at the hour of our own death and resurrection.

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.


To one God holy beyond all holiness, loving beyond all human comprehension,

to the Person Jesus named as Father, to the Person he knew as the Spirit of Truth,

and to the Holy Light we see reflected in the face of Christ our Lord,

be thanks and praise and worship, now and ever more..

Blessed be God.

Blessed be God forever.




For The Disadvantaged

.    (This prayer may be used either with or without the response.)


God of love, have mercy on the world of human affairs where the gap between the advantaged and disadvantaged seems to be ever widening.


We pray for all victims of this injustice:


For the sick and the maimed who cannot afford the latest in medical technology.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For the hungry millions who have been denied the benefits of genetically improved grains, fruits and meats.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For indigenous minorities whose health and education prospects lag far behind the general population.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For the unemployed who have been cast aside by the electronic revolution in industry and commerce.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For the second and third generation of refugees who are still living in camps that were set up in the previous century.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For small nations who are being exploited or shut out of markets by the strong and aggressive.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For the poor who cannot afford to pay the cost of obtaining justice in courts of law, or are unable bear the cost of life-saving surgery.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


For the lonely souls, who live, work, suffer or sorrow in solitude, without family to surround them our friends to support them.

     Lord of love, hear our prayer,

     Lord of love, enlarge our love of truth, justice and peace.


God of justice and mercy, keep your church faithful and compassionate. Do not permit us to become so concerned with keeping our ecclesiastical wheels turning that we neglect to love our neighbour even as Christ Jesus has loved us.


In his name we pray. Amen




All your ways and all your hours are in the hand of God.

Therefore, go out with confidence.


May Christ’s light so shine,

that all may see our loving deeds

and glorify our God whose love is everlasting.


The One who has begun good things in you,

does not accept the word ‘defeat.’

Thanks be to God!


The Love of God will underpin you,

the fire of the Spirit will indwell you,

and the saving grace of Christ will always redeem you,

this day and always.





              BY ORDERING ONLINE

My Best Mate,  (first edition 2013)

ISBN 978-1-937763-78-7: AUSTRALIA:

ISBN :  978-1-937763-79- 4: USA

Australian Prayers

Third edition May 2014

ISBN   978-1-62880-033-3 Australia

Jesus Our Future

Prayers for the Twenty First Century

 Second Edition May 2014

ISBN 978-1-62880-032-6

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Although this book was written with young people in mind, it has proved to be popular with Christians or seekers of all ages. Through the eyes and ears of a youth named Chip, big questions are raised and wrestled with; faith and doubt,  unanswered  prayers, refugees,  death and grief, racism and bullying, are just a few of the varied topics confronted in these pages. Suitable as a gift to the young, and proven to be helpful when it has been used as a study book for adults.

Australian Prayers has been a valuable prayer resource for over thirty years.  These prayers are suitable for both private and public use and continue to be as fresh and relevant today as ever.  Also, the author encourages users to adapt geographical or historical images to suit local, current situations.

This collection of original, contemporary prayers is anchored firmly in the belief that no matter what the immediate future may hold for us, ultimately Jesus is himself both the goal and the shape of our future.  He is the key certainty towards which the Spirit of God is inexorably leading us in this scientific and high-tech era. Although the first pages of this book were created for the turn of the millennium, the resources in this volume reflect the interests, concerns and needs of our post-modern world.