October 18, 2020
by Matt Helms, Associate Pastor
Gracious and compassionate God, as we joyfully celebrate the gift of children being baptized and that beautiful reminder of your constant love and presence in their lives, we also remember the depth of your love and care for every one of us, for all of us are your children.
As a psalmist once wrote, “Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.”
So trusting that your love will never abandon or forsake us, we come to you this morning continuing to carry so much on our collective hearts. We continue to pray for all those struggling through this pandemic: those who are struggling to put food on their tables, those who are facing foreclosure or eviction, and those who have been unable to find work or opportunity.
As the temperatures begin to drop, we remember and pray for all those who will be affected by this winter: those without shelter or basic necessities to stay warm, those who work or run businesses that are at risk as outdoor gatherings decrease, and all those who are facing further isolation in what has already been a painful and lonely time. And as recovery from natural disasters like fires and hurricanes continue, we pray for all those who were displaced or lost homes or who are facing uncertain futures.
It can be hard for us to hold or even recognize the depth of need that so many are facing, but we hold to that promise that you have given us—that promise that says that your love for us will never let us go. And because of your love for us, we ask that you restore, renew, and reenergize us for your work once more, as we try to live out your love in our daily lives.
Help us to build a world where all are treated as beloved children of God, where children don’t have to be afraid to walk in the streets, where our most vulnerable populations are cared for, where your Word is not just spoken at church but embodied and proclaimed through our collective lives. The work is tiresome and feels daunting, so strengthen us for all that you ask us to do. Give us courage. And grant us a sense of the hope and peace that your Son came to bring.
It is in humility and hope that we raise these prayers to you, closing with the words your Son taught us to pray: Our Father...
Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church