Sunday, August 11, 2013
Offered by Judith L. Watt, Associate Pastor
God of this beautiful universe and God of our lives, thank you for sun-clad days, for cool night breezes, for maturing gardens, for chances to get away, for friends, and family and work colleagues. Thank you for these days, days which we would like to bottle because we sense the coming again of getting back to business—with school or new jobs or September-like new beginnings. Thank you, great God, that you are God of our lives in every season, in every respite, in every challenge.
We give you thanks and pray for people who have worked through the night in our city, those who patrol the streets, those who clean offices, firefighters on the alert, laborers of every sort. Give them good rest today.
Bless teachers preparing for classroom beginnings. Give them anticipation for the students who will be in their charge and hope for the possibilities each student brings. In palpable ways, O God, be with those students and teachers whose schools have been closed. Help them to find safe passageways to new schools.
We pray for parents saying good-bye again to college-aged children and to sons and daughters entering military service or simply leaving home. Remind us all that you are in the midst of our transitions, whatever they may be.
For those who live alone, we ask your tender care and your mighty presence, that they might experience a solitude that is filled with joy and peace because of knowing your presence always.
Our world troubles us. Sustain those who hunger and thirst for righteousness and strive for peace and peacemaking. Give agencies of all sorts resources to minister to the refugees of the world, especially the millions of refugees streaming out of Syria. Bring peace to that land. Bring wisdom to leaders in Egypt, in Pakistan, throughout Israel, and in our own country, so that justice and righteousness would fill our hearts and nations everywhere.
Thank you, God, for your saving grace and sustaining promises, for the gift of faith and prayer and community. Especially we thank you for Jesus, who taught us to pray for daily sustenance and protection from temptation and the coming of your kingdom. Hear us now as we join together in his prayer: Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church