Sunday, May 4, 2008
Offered by Dana Ferguson, Executive Associate Pastor
God of creation, who has fashioned each of us, you know our every thought, our every deed, our every name, our every sitting down and our every rising up, our every coming and our every going. Remind us that you have created us in your image; fearfully and wonderfully we are made, each with our own gifts and possibilities.
You call us, O God, to use these gifts in ministries of grace, and we have called ourselves to be a light in this city. So we pray, ever fervently and humbly, that we might be faithful to our commitment. For the sake of your gospel, we beseech you for wisdom greater than our wisdom, for vision greater than our vision, and for strength beyond our strength.
We give you thanks for a past that provides us with a path to follow—for those who by their love taught us to love; for those who saw our weaknesses and loved us despite them, who caught us when we stumbled and praised us when we stood. Through them teach us the joy of being your people and of serving with joy.
We pray for corners of this world where the joy of living is clouded by the challenges of life: for those who grieve and those who wait to grieve; for those who hope and those who see no possibilities; for those who labor for justice and for those who live in lands where injustice rules; for those who send family members to the battlefield with pride and trepidation and those who mourn the loss of their brave and committed loved ones; for those who have begun again to rebuild lives and homes and communities and those who stand this day stunned by the loss of what was once treasured now swept away by the storms of earth and life. For all your children, we lift our prayers. Where there is struggle, surround it with the hope of life yet to live and dreams yet to dream, adventures yet to take in this life and the next.
Send us forth to live boldly the truth of your grace upon grace, giving freely to this city and to this world. Shape us into a people that proclaim boldly in our living and our loving that the church is your body alive in this world, revealing who you are and whose we are to all the world. Give us hearts stout with courage that we may not hide from those who suffer. Give us shoulders broad with strength that we may walk with the wounded. Give us spirits quiet with humility that we may call forth new life in your name and win friends for the gospel. In the name of the one who taught us to pray saying, Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church