Tag Archives: reformed worship

Humility and Wonder: Prayers of the People

These prayers are based on Proverbs 3:1-20. This scripture is full of beautiful imagery for God: a tree of life and source of water; a loving parent and source of mystery. May these prayers carry the humility and wonder of your own! 

Peace,

Anna

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O Lord, you are a tree of life,

Shading us in mercy and grounding us in love.

O Lord, you are a refreshing spring,

Washing our wounds with compassion 

and reviving our bodies with strength. 

O Lord, you are a whisper, a breeze,

Blowing through the world with winds of justice and calls to change. 

 

We give you thanks, O God, for the goodness your grace

And the good things in your world.

When we feel desperate, you surprise us with hope.

When we find ourselves alone, you call us to companionship.

When we are certain that we are right

you confront us with with your righteousness.

 

Bind your good news to our lives, O God.

Write it on the tablets of our hearts

And paint it on the landscapes of our lives. 

 

We pray, O Lord, in humility and in wonder.

Keep us in your mercy: bound to you and to one another. 

 

We pray, O God, for places and people in your beloved world that are hurting. 

For the people of Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, 

affected by or recovering from the recent shootings.

For people who live in the fear or the reality 

of being separated from their families. 

For people whose fear has turned to hatred,

Whose suffering has turned to violence,

And whose faith has morphed into a dangerous ideology.

 

We pray, O Lord, in humility and in wonder.

Keep us in your mercy: bound to you and to one another. 

 

We pray for people in our community who are suffering:

[Name the prayer concerns of your specific community.]

For others, known to you and named in the silence of our hearts. 

 

We pray, O Lord, in humility and in wonder.

Keep us in your mercy: bound to you and to one another. 

 

In the name of Christ,

Amen. 

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Where Does Love Come From? An Affirmation from 1 John 4

Where does love come from?

Love is from God.

Everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.

Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love.

 

What does God’s love mean for us?

God sent God’s only son into the world

so that we might live through him.

Since God loved us so much,

we also ought to love one another.

If we love one another, God lives in us,

and God’s love is fulfilled in us.

The commandment we have from God is this:

those who love God must love their siblings also.

 

Why should we take the risk to love, when it is easier hide behind fear?

We love because God first loved us.

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.

God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God,

and God abides in them.

Amen.

 

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Good News: Prayers of the People

These prayers were written with last week’s lectionary texts in mind: Jonah 3:1-10 and Mark 1:14-20.

 

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Liturgy writing is a very colorful process.

Holy God, living word,

hear the prayers of your people.

We give you thanks for wonders great and small:

for warmth in winter,

for peace in chaos,

for family, for health,

for words of hope,

and showers of mercy.

 

Proclaim your good news to us once more,

and help us to repent, believe, and follow.

 

We give you thanks for the stories of faith:

for the scriptures that point to your love for us.

For John, Simon, Andrew, and James,

who left their nets to follow you;

For the story of Jonah, Ninevah, and the king,

who bear witness to your loving mercy;

For all the saints of our lives today,

who have entrusted the faith to us.

Move us, O God, from prayers of thanksgiving

to lives of thanksgiving.

Move us, O God, from breathing with every prayer

to praying with every breath.

 

Proclaim your good news to us once more,

and help us to repent, believe, and follow.

 

As we lift a prayer in thanksgiving, O God,

we lift another in worry.

God whose mercy knows no end,

hear the prayers of your people.

We pray for all who are ill this day:

whose bodies are weary with disease or injury.

Breathe healing upon them, O God,

Breathe healing upon us, O God.

 

Proclaim your good news to us once more,

and help us to repent, believe, and follow.

 

You created the world good,

and we pray for the places where news is bad.

For countries, cities, neighborhoods, and families

torn apart by violence or fear:

Breathe peace, O God.

For your church around world,

seeking to serve you in a new way:

Breathe new life, O God.

For all who are seeking hope, direction, or community:

Breathe your spirit, O God.

 

Proclaim your good news to us once more,

and help us to repent, believe, and follow.

 

In the name of the one who embodied your love,

the one who always invites us to follow,

Amen.

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Completely: Prayers of the People based on Psalm 139

Psalm 139 has always been one of my favorites, and today’s lectionary gave me a chance to reflect on it. May these prayers remind us all that we are known and loved, completely. 

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Oh Lord, you have searched us and known us.

  You know when we sit down and when we rise up;

you discern our thoughts from far away.

  You search out our path and our lying down,

and are acquainted with all our ways.

 

We praise you, O living God,

For you know us completely and love us completely.

 

You have created us good and holy,

lending your image in the act of creation.

Again and again, we have fallen away,

and you have brought us back with words of grace.

We have hidden from mystery of your presence,

and you have found us, again and again,

and repeated the call, “Follow me.”

 

You bring peace into the chaos we create;

You bring hope into the webs of doubt we spin;

You bring your holy spirit into the corners of our lives.

 

Even before a word is on our tongues,

  O Lord, you know it completely.

You hem us in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon us.

 

We praise you, O living God,

for you know us completely and love us completely.

 

We pray for the world wrapped in your love,

for the people and places dear to our hearts,

and for the ones known only to yours.

 

For those who are cold, whether in body or in spirit:

Bring the warmth only you can provide,

and move us to us to share the warmth we can provide.

For those who are hungry, thirsty, grieving or ill:

Bring the comfort only you can provide,

and help us to share the comfort we can provide.

(Continue with prayers for your specific community.) 

 

Hear our prayers, O Living God,

for you know us completely and love us completely.

 

On this weekend of marches and commemoration,

we give thanks for the life of your prophet Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

As we celebrate his legacy, O God, let us recognize yours.

Convict us of the ways we support injustice through our action or inaction,

and empower us to work for your reign of justice, peace, and dignity for all.

 

Where can we go from your spirit?

  Or where can we flee from your presence?

If we take the wings of the morning

  and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,

even there your hand shall lead us,

  and your right hand shall hold us fast.

 

In the name of the one who was Love made flesh,

Amen.

 

 

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