Sunday, January 15, 2017
Offered by Nanette Sawyer, Minister for Congregational Life
Gracious and loving God, we thank you that you have given us life. Thank you for placing the breath of life into our lungs. Thank you for filling us with your Spirit of Life. Thank you for coming into our lives in the form of Jesus so that you could walk with us and cry with us and bring us healing and hope and new life.
In this new year, reawaken our trust in you, reawaken our commitment to follow you in creating a world filled with justice and wholeness and abundance for all, not just for some. Let your grace and compassion and generosity so fill us that we cannot help but share it with the world. Help us to follow leaders who inspire us, and help us to become those leaders who inspire others.
On this day, we especially give you thanks for the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who did inspire us and who called us to trust in the power of love to overcome hate. Sometimes love requires strength and tenacity, and so we rely on your love, God, to strengthen us for the tasks you have set before us.
We pray today for all those here and throughout the world who are suffering in any way, whether it is a suffering of the body, mind, or spirit. We grieve our losses, Holy One, and we know that you sit with us in the midst of our sorrow and even our despair. Help us to know your love and to depend on it.
We pray for our country, God, for all of us in it, that we may find unity in our common humanity and find joy in our differences. Help us to honor and share and learn from each of our unique identities and diverse communities and cultures. Help us to take a risk for love today, knowing that we are safe in you.
Through Christ, with Christ, in Christ we pray, joining our voices together as Jesus taught us to pray, saying, Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church