Prayers of the People

Sunday, December 16, 2012
Offered by Joyce Shin, Associate Pastor

Almighty God, you know that our hearts are pulled in more than one direction. Our prayers tend to go every which way, wherever news of pain, conflict, and need, of joy, blessing, and promise lead us. And yet we know that our prayers all finally end in you. For this we give you thanks.

To whom else can we turn, O God, than to you? On this day, we pray for your solace upon the children who witnessed the horror of madness in Connecticut. Heal their wounds inside and out. Help them to feel safe. We pray for parents and educators who are stunned with grief. Bless that community with your Holy Spirit, and hold them until all hurt is healed.

We pray for people who, though they are far from us, are dear and close to you. For those in Syria, Iraq, North Korea . . . In the midst of chaos or under the thumb of cruelty, give them resilience, and give them hope.

We pray for people close to home: for our neighbors and for ourselves. We pray for this church family. As big as it is, we are bound together by ties of mission, compassion, care, and friendship. Teach us by your word and seal us by your Spirit that in our action together we may reflect whose we are.

We thank you for receiving our cares about people and circumstances so precious to us that we would not entrust them to anyone else. We thank your Son, our Lord, for bearing the burdens that we would never dare ask another to carry. We know that so much of the trouble is of our own making, and yet you never leave us with what we deserve. We marvel at your mercy.

Your Son, O God, is our prayer come true. Coming to us as an infant to behold, he will disarm us of our defenses, and he will capture our attention. Though we should flee fast as we can, we wait. We wait to see what he will reveal about the world, about ourselves, and about you, O God. We wait to see how a world can be remade by mercy and love, by sacrifice and service.

So clear away our blind spots that we may behold this Christmas all you have to show us, that we may marvel in it, that we may be so moved by it. For the sake of your Son and the world he loved, we pray the prayer he taught us to say: Our Father . . .

Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church


126 E. Chestnut Street
(at Michigan Avenue)
Chicago, Illinois 60611.2014
(Across from the Hancock)

For events in the Sanctuary,
enter from Michigan Avenue

Getting to Fourth Church

Receptionist: 312.787.4570

Directory: 312.787.2729



© 1998—2023 Fourth Presbyterian Church