Sunday, January 27, 2008
Offered by Dana Ferguson, Executive Associate Pastor
O God who promises good to us, in you our hope is secure; you are our shield and portion as long as life endures. For the many ways that you make it true and ever clear that when we’ve been here ten thousand years, bright shining as the sun, we’ve no less days to sing your praise than when we’d first begun, we give you thanks.
As we begin again in this new year, when resolutions are already wearing thin, give us fresh vision and new resolve. In these days when hope is the talk of the campaign trail and promises of change abound, remind us that you are the source of the sure promise to make all things new, that through your Spirit to move and transform this world there is real hope in dreams long held.
We pray, in these days of primaries, for candidates and those who work for them and support them. Grant to those with choices to make and decisions to render clear thoughts and deep wisdom and the courage to act with pure motives. Give voice to those of noble vision. Give courage to those who speak truth. Bring words and actions, we pray, that are right and fair and honorable. And then, as we set out to polling sites, give us minds and hearts dedicated to faithful and wise citizenship and to the common good for all people.
As we strive to be faithful in the many ways of discipleship, remind us too of those who struggle under the weight of life’s challenges. Let us reach out to those who stumble and break their fall. Help us catch those who are about to faint and lift up those who are struggling to rise. If someone requires our time, help us to give it. If someone needs a generous hand, help us to offer it. If someone wants to bless our lives, help us to receive it. If someone suffers from a wrong we have done, help us to mend it.
We pray for those who grieve and those who wait to grieve; for those who hope and those who see no possibilities; for those who live in denial and those who can’t deal with reality. We pray for soldiers who fight in the name of freedom and for civilians who live in fear or strike out in retaliation. We pray for those who wonder when justice will come to them and those who steadfastly hold on to hope and continue in the name of peace. Help us all, O God, to see the world as you created it to be, to understand justice as you see it, and then to live so that the world’s people may live as one, knowing the joy with which you bring us into being and count each of us as precious.
O God of new life and new opportunity, who has given us minds with which to discern your truth, hearts with which to discover your will, and strength with which to do your work, we have promised to serve you to the end. So give us grace to follow, we pray. Let our deeds speak so loudly that the hearers of our words will become the doers of your word that all your children might know the world of plenty grace and love. We pray this and all things in the name of Jesus Christ, saying together, Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church