Use these 7 common table prayers at meal time to start your time of refreshment by asking for God’s blessings. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of the post where you can download a free printable of these prayers to use right away.
- Short Mealtime Prayers
- Other Common Table Prayers
- Tips for Getting your Family in the Habit of Saying a Mealtime Prayer
- Why it’s Important to Say Grace Before Meals
- Prayer When Out to Eat
- Prayer When You Have Guests for Dinner
- Free PDF Printable of Common Table Prayers for Meals
- Pin this to Save the Prayers for Later
Does your family have common table prayers they say before dinner together? If your goal is to bring your family closer together and grow in faith, use these prayers as a way to bring connection and meaning before your meal together.
We’ve included a variety of prayers for before meals so you can choose one that fits your needs if you have a family with young children or all adults.
Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this post where we have included a free PDF printable of these common dinner time prayers.
Short Mealtime Prayers
Here are easy to remember, yet meaningful, dinner table prayers.
1. Lutheran Common Table Prayer (Come Lord Jesus)
For as long as I can remember, our family has said this prayer before dinner:
Come, Lord Jesus, be our guest,
and let these gifts to us be blessed.
We are Lutheran (Missouri Synod) and this prayer has been said before meals in our homes and at church gatherings for generations. In fact, we call it the common table prayer, but it’s really only common to us, so I would call it the Lutheran Common Table Prayer, or Come Lord Jesus.
There is continual debate about if the last line should be “let these gifts to us be blessed” or “let thy gifts to us be blessed” or even “let these thy gifts to us be blessed” for those who want to make everyone happy but throw off the rhythm.
Here is a further explanation of the meaning behind the Lutheran common table prayer.
2. Catholic Common Table Prayer (Bless Us O Lord and These Thy Gifts)
The Catholic church uses this prayer, which is also called the common table prayer or table blessing:
Bless us O Lord, and these thy gifts,
Which we are about to receive, from thy bounty,
Through Christ, Our Lord.
This prayer has been prayed in Catholic families before meals for many generations.
3. God is Great, God is Good
God is great, God is good.
Let us thank him for our food.
By his hands we all are fed.
Thank you Lord for our daily bread.
This prayer is a great one for young children to pray. For very small children, start with just speaking the first two lines and then saying Amen.
4. Blessed Are You
Blessed are you, O Lord God, King of the Universe, for you give us food to sustain our lives and make our hearts glad; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
This prayer for children and adults is a great reminder that God is the giver of all good gifts. This prayer is especially meaningful around Thanksgiving.
5. Be Present at our Table
Be present at our table Lord,
Be here and everywhere adored.
These mercies bless and grant that we
May feast in fellowship with thee.
This meaningful prayer was originally sung and can be spoken together as a grace before meals.
6. Lord, We Thank You
Lord, we thank You
for the food before us,
the friends beside us,
the love between us;
And Your Presence among us.
This prayer reminds us of the blessing of our food and friends and family to share it with together.
7. Come Lord Jesus (Morning Joy)
Come Lord Jesus be our Guest,
Our morning joy, our evening rest,
And with our daily bread impart,
Your love and peace to every heart.
This common table prayer is a meaningful prayer inviting God into every aspect of our lives. This could be an especially meaningful breakfast table prayer.
8. Oh Give Thanks
Oh give thanks unto the Lord,
for He is good,
and His mercy endures forever.
This simple, meaningful prayer can be spoken at the beginning or end of a meal. Some families choose to say one of the other common table prayers to start a meal and this one to end it.
Other Common Table Prayers
Growing up, did your family have a common prayer at the dinner table? Another fun place to find prayers is ones used by our kids at summer camp. These can be spoken or sung and are enjoyed by kids and adults.
If you enjoyed these prayers, be sure to also check out our list of Thanksgiving dinner table prayers.
Tips for Getting your Family in the Habit of Saying a Mealtime Prayer
Do you forget to pray over your meal as a family? It’s easy to do if you aren’t used to the idea yet and especially if hungry kids are anxious to eat. I recommend writing out one or two of these common table prayers on index cards and have them ready close to the dinner table or kitchen area.
Another idea is to set an alarm on your phone to help you remember, or even just ask your family to help everyone remember to say grace before meals. As you make family payer a habit it will become part of the fabric of your life, woven into the day to keep you connected to God and one another.
If you are working to grow in faith as a family, be sure to also check out this post about how to get into the habit of going to church.
Why it’s Important to Say Grace Before Meals
The meaning and purpose of grace before meals is to acknowledge our dependence on God and to give thanks to Him for meeting our need for food and daily blessings.
Prayer When Out to Eat
Does your family say a prayer before the meal when you are eating out at a restaurant?
Our family does because we feel it’s important to pray before each meal (no matter the location) and we think it’s a good witness of our faith. However, if this makes you uncomfortable, you could also bow your heads for a moment of silence and each person can pray on their own, or you can simply choose not to pray before this one meal.
Prayer When You Have Guests for Dinner
Most guests want to honor and respect the wishes of the person who is providing the meal, so it’s appropriate to continue to offer your regular prayer even if you have guests for dinner.
Do what you can to include your guests and make them feel comfortable, such as letting them know what you are doing so they aren’t caught off guard.
If you are going to say a memorized prayer, provide them with a written copy. Invite your guest to join the prayer but let them know it’s not required.
Free PDF Printable of Common Table Prayers for Meals
Use this free digital download to pray these prayers together with your family.
Does your family have a prayer before meals you say together before your meals?
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