Sunday, October 14, 2007
Offered by John W. Vest, Associate Pastor
Gracious and loving God,
this morning as we gather for worship—
residents, sojourners, exiles, aliens—
we do indeed pray for this city that you have called us to live in,
this great collection of peoples,
full of hope and promise,
heartbreak and despair.
Our city, with all it has to offer
and all of its needs,
reminds us of cities across our world—
cities you have called us to pray for;
people you have called us to serve.
Wise and discerning Lord,
you have created this beautiful world
and have placed us in charge as your stewards
to care for your precious creation
and use its resources for the good of all.
You have gifted us with intelligence and creativity,
with resourcefulness and invention,
and upon your creation we have added our own contributions—
mountainous towers and hospitals and schools and places of worship
and so much more—
and in doing so we have joined in your process of creation.
All that you have made is good;
some of what we have made is good;
some is bad.
We pray that you will give us wisdom and courage
to use our gifts for good,
to care for your creation,
to care for your people,
to recognize you when you visit us.
bless and guide those who are in positions of power.
May we gather together and seek peace instead of war.
May we provide for those who are without food or shelter.
May we promote liberation for those who are oppressed.
May we bring healing to those who are sick and dying
and may you give comfort and peace when we fail
or when there is simply nothing we can do.
We thank you, God, for the gift of life
and for the promise of life eternal.
We thank you for your presence in our lives,
for your Spirit that moves within us.
Fill us up now and let your love overflow through us.
Transform us into the likeness of our Son, Jesus the Messiah.
Even now we join our voices with his
as we pray the prayer that he taught us.
Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church