Pastoral prayer Sunday 25 August 2019F
God-with-us, we come as people who know the burdens that life brings, as those who know the need for healing – in body, mind and spirit. We have gathered with a sense of the sacredness of this space, aware of your presence flowing from one person to another. We come with our wounds wide open, with our defences down, calling to you as did so many who approached Jesus, saying “Heal me, help me, touch me!” We work hard at being happy, at coping, at surviving, at holding on, but we have come here hoping to let go and to open ourselves to Christ’s healing flow. (pause for reflection)
Touch our lives, our God, as we worship here today, and cast your sunlight through our tears till rainbows rise, and plant dreams where wounds leave scars like furrows in broken ground, rekindling our hope, reviving our strength, refreshing our faith.
Our hearts are full of gratitude as we think of the many blessings in our lives:
The gift of faith to believe in you, and hear your call,
The love of family and friends,
For shelter, clean water and plentiful food,
For access to education and health care,
For freedom of speech and the freedom of movement.
But we also have concerns we want to bring to you:
The fires in the Amazon that are burning, ravaging the very lungs of our world. Please be with those who are trying to get them under control, and with those people – and animals – effected by the devastating fires. We’re sorry we often aren’t very good stewards of the world you have given to our care. Help us – around the world - be more aware of how our actions effect your marvellous world.
We’re also concerned with the situation in Hong Kong. People are taking a stand for what they believe to be right for their future. Help wisdom to reign there, and bring peace with justice to that situation.
We also have people on our hearts we are concerned about. Thank you for the prayers you’ve answered. We especially want to bring before you Barry, Craig, Neri’s Mum, Jack . . . And there are others on our hearts who are sick, recovering, grieving, lonely, in need of your help. We bring them before you now, in the silence - (pause)
You are the God who calls people like us, and the long list of believing, obedient people before us, who trusted your promise enough to keep the call. So we give you thanks that you are a calling God, who calls always to dangerous new places.
We pray for your grace and mercy among us so that we may be among those who believe your promises enough to respond to your call. We pray in the name of the One who embodied your promise and enacted your call, even Jesus – who taught us to pray, saying
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours
now and forever. Amen.