Sunday, October 27, 2013
Offered by Edwin Estevez, Pastoral Resident
God of our understanding and beyond our understanding, we are before you as we have always been—half-believers, doubters, wounded and having wounded, afraid, detached, worried, wondering whether we are truly valuable, where we truly belong, and if we are truly loved.
You, too, are before us, as you have always been—with wide open arms to welcome us home, committed to our healing into wholeness, accepting us just as we are, reminding us that we are valued and that you are ever-present with us, even when we feel at our loneliest.
With this reassurance, we lift up our concerns to you, for our faith directs us to look at the world that is and the world as it could be. We pray that we may all be one. We pray for every member of Christ’s body, that we may truly and humbly serve you.
We pray for all our elders, ministers, and deacons, that they may be faithful leaders and fellow companions on the journey of faith.
We pray for the places of the world that know war and escalating violence, especially for Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Palestine and Israel, Egypt, Colombia, Myanmar, and Nigeria.
We pray for all who govern and hold authority in the nations of the world, that there may be justice and peace on the earth; for President Obama, as he leads this nation, and for all the political leaders that they may legislate responsibly and wisely; for Mayor Emanuel as he leads this city.
Give us grace to do your will in all that we undertake, that our works may find favor in your sight as we volunteer for Chicago Lights and in the many programs of this church and this city, by giving out lunch bags, assisting with Sunday Night Supper, having an encouraging conversation with a stranger, or taking part in many other such opportunities.
For our city in which we find people who are homeless, cold in the middle of the night, hungry; for our children suffering from gun violence and a school system that lacks the resources to educate; for those who’ve lost much in recent times from fires and mourn their losses, we pray.
For the poor, the persecuted, the sick, and all who suffer; for refugees, prisoners, and all who are in danger, that they may be relieved and protected, we pray to you, O Lord.
We thank you for your saints who have entered into joy, May we also come to share in your heavenly kingdom.
For a blessing upon all human labor and for the right use of the riches of creation, that the world may be freed from poverty, famine, and disaster, we pray to you, O Lord.
And we also pray for our own needs and those of others, as we prayer together what Jesus taught: Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church