Sunday, March 12, 2017
Offered by Judith L. Watt, Associate Pastor
Sometimes, O God, it seems as though we have too much—too much violence, too much anxiety, too many demands and problems, too many broken dreams, too much war, too much greed, simply too much to bear. So here we are again, coming to you with that which is on our minds, thankful we can pray, thankful that you promise to hear us, thankful that being here reminds us we are not alone.
We pray, O God, for the nations of the world, that you would guide their rulers to set aside fear and greed and ambition. Help them and help us to see the world and all of its children as yours—people in need of security and equal opportunity, people deserving of meaningful work and empowering education, creatures in need of clean air and clean water and enough food.
Be with nations where natural disasters have occurred and keep occurring. Floods, fires, cyclones, and droughts have ravaged the lives of thousands of people. Be their refuge and strength through the agencies and workers providing aid.
We pray for those who struggle with anxiety and depression and pray that each day they would see a glimmer of your light that would be enough to get them through just another day.
Gracious Lord, be with people we know and love. Provide hope and assurance to those whose health is threatened. Be a gentle presence for those who have lost the love of their lives. Provide wisdom and humor to parents in the throes of raising children. Hear us now, in a moment of our own silent prayer, as we lift the names of those friends and loved ones especially in need of your grace.
Lord of all compassion, we pray for ourselves, that you soften the places in our hearts that have become hardened, that you would replace cynicism with real hope, that you would teach us how you want us to serve you, and that you would grant us the gift of gratitude and joy. Bless this church just as you have throughout its history, preserving our desire to be of service, binding us more firmly in your love, and igniting us again and again to be your light to everyone who needs your light.
We are a restless people, dear Lord, restless and wandering, sometimes up and sometimes down, sometimes hopeful and sometimes despairing, and so we need you. We know that, even though we keep forgetting. Remind us as often as is necessary that we do need you, but also that you do love us. We pray all of this in the dear name of your Son and our Savior, Jesus the Christ, who taught us to pray, saying together, Our Father . . .
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church