Prisons Week - 8th - 14th October 2023 
- Look up!

PSALM 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. 

There are times when we feel distant or doubt God’s presence in our lives, even crying out in anger or sadness “Where are you now?” But he has promised never to leave us and as we search for truth, love, purpose or forgiveness, there comes the response asking us to “Look up child”.

For centuries Christians learned to pray through the Psalms, the sacred poems and prayers written from the heights and depths of human experience and emotions; despair, loss, anger, betrayal, abandonment, guilt, suff ering, confusion, hope, joy, wonder, thanks and praise.

The Psalms have inspired this year’s prayers, written by people with their own experience of prison and criminal justice; prisoners, prison
leavers, victims of crime, families and communities, those working or volunteering in prisons and the criminal justice system. We invite you to pray each day this week with them, using one or more of their prayers below. You could also pray using a Psalm that is familiar to you.

You could pray as you watch this year’s film on our website, listening to the words of ‘Look up Child’ sung by Lauren Daigle.

When we are weighed down by life, we don’t necessarily have to bow our heads to pray. We can look up to know our heavenly Father’s loving gaze on us. We can look up and see his presence in the wonder of creation and the living world. Whenever and wherever we call or cry out in prayer, “look up child” is the response from a loving God who is always ready to hear, whose faithful love reaches out to us through Jesus and off ers us forgiveness and hope, all of our days.