Prayers of the People

October 23, 2022

Offered by Lucy Forster-Smith, Senior Associate Pastor

Unfailing God, source of our lives and source of generous love, we come to you this day as a people who find our lives so blessed. We are ever sure that your love, your everlasting arms, hold us through every moment of our lives. You bring such strength, passion, awakening to our days, and for this we are very grateful.

And yet, O God, there are moments when we admit that our faith falters. We wake each morning and often end our days with news from our city, our family, our nation, and our world that shakes us to the quick. When gunfire takes lives, when mistrust erupts unexpectedly, when our joyful song turns to lament, when our hearts break knowing our kin in this nation and this world fear for their lives, we wonder how we might bring about change, deep and systemic change.

We figure that we are smart, we are bold, we are committed and will take matters into our own hands. But we are also shortsighted and sometime arrogant in our engagement. And we forget, O gracious and wonderous God, that you are the one who created this world and holds the whole miraculous and messy world in the palm of your hand. Quicken our hands, our hearts, our muscles, our passion to be bountiful in our work to make every day a day of peace.

Yes, O God, on this day of all of our days, sing a new song in our lives. Make us bold in our actions to undo all that would hold us back from bringing joy and hope into this world, for you are the sure foundation, O God. You are the church’s one foundation, O Christ. Establish and garner all that would be deep and holy life in these days we have on this planet. And empower us to follow Jesus’ ways of peace, healing, and Spirit-charged love in this world that waits for it.

Bring your healing balm to all who are sick, in pain, isolated, wondering if anyone cares. Bring comfort to those who grieve the loss of family, friends, hope, a future. Equip us to sing your song in places of unrest and places where your whistling joy is a reminder of goodness and deep grace. And give us reaching hearts of thanksgiving for brilliant journalists who bring insight such as we heard on Tuesday’s Michigan Avenue Forum, for children who startle us with innocent beauty, for animals blessed yesterday and for parents, grandparents, aunties and uncles, cousins, yes, all who are blessed by them.

For it is in the strong name of Jesus that we pray the prayer he taught us saying, Our Father...

Prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church


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