As you sip your Monday morning coffee and prepare for your week, I offer you the following prayer for reflection:
Որեւէ գործ սկսելէ առաջ
Prayer Before Work
Զգործս ձեռաց մերոց ուղիղ արա ի մեզ, Տէր,
եւ զգործս ձեռաց մերոց յաջողեա ի մեզ: Ամէն
Uzkordzus tzeratz merotz Oogheegh ara ee mez, Der.
Yev uzkordus tzeratz merotz Hachoghya mez. Amen
The work of our hands upon us Lord, establish thou
And prosper all the work We undertake. Amen
This is a very simple verse from Psalms that was adopted by our church fathers at a time when they incorporated verses from the Bible into our traditional Armenian prayers. You will find this prayer in our Morning Service. The idea behind it is simple and straightforward; this prayer is meant to bless the daily work we undertake. As a young boy I was taught this prayer at school. Every day before our classwork began, all the students and the teachers were called to gather in the schoolyard where we would recite together the Lord’s Prayer, the Prayer before Work, and sing the School Anthem. The importance of asking the Lord to bless our hands as they undertook the day’s work was ingrained in us, and it was impressed upon us that any work accomplished without the Lord’s blessing was poor in spirit. It made such a lasting impression on me as a child that to this day I recite this prayer before I head out the door for my daily calling.
Let us remain faithful, mindful and spiritually strong, as we stand together in the face of this pandemic.