Prayers of the People

Sunday, January 18, 2015
Offered by Judith L. Watt, Associate Pastor

Precious Lord, take our hands. Lead us on. Help us stand.

For you know that we are tired and weak and worn, because we are a people who want the world’s groaning to stop. We would like to shut our eyes to the news and close our ears to the clamoring. But we can’t. And we know that you never shut your eyes or close your ears or turn your back on us. Never. And so, once again, we thank you with words that are so inadequate, because your love is so big, and your mercy is so wide, and your passion is so deep, and we are the recipients.

So give us better than 20/20 vision, O God, so that we can see the good news in this world that does exist—the deeds done that make you smile; the love exchanged that makes you dance; the hard conversations that ensue, carrying your people to a better place; the long arc of history that really does point toward justice.

Improve our hearing so that we can hear the touch of your creation in the cold, crisp air, and hear the nurture that is invisibly taking place below the ground in preparation for sunnier times, and hear the message of truth beneath another person’s complaint, and hear and receive the words of affirmation that come when they arrive.

We give you thanks for the guiding force of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and so many others who have and continue to work for a world where dreams can come true for anyone, regardless of race. Help us to know how to heal our divisions and to talk with honesty and to hear with understanding and to act as people confident in your love, not only for us, but for all of your people.

Be with the people of France in their fear and shock. Again, be with those who are mourning the deaths of loved ones because of sudden violence, fueled by anger. Heal the divisions that exist in our world and in our families, animosities that won’t let go. Raise up leaders whose voices stir us to good action and increased love and abiding respect. Great God, surround our children, no matter what their age, with courage, fueled by what they know of you, to face and tackle this world’s challenges.

Precious Lord, take our hands, linger near, and hear our prayers, as we pray the same prayer you prayed with those first disciples, Our Father . . .

Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church


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