Sunday, 11 October 2009

Prayers - 11th October

More recycling (from two different services - both Feb 08, placement 4) and both adapted of course!

Let us unite our hearts in prayer; Let us pray,

Lord God, we bring ourselves from a variety of situations, to this place and at this time, to pause, to draw close to you again, and to acknowledge that
You are God.

We may have a strong belief, or a new and slowly growing faith; we may have let things slip into mere habit, or be the most enthusiastic and committed member; but whoever we are, we say: you are the Almighty God, the Maker of our universe and our world, the One who wants to be in relationship with us, the One who would do anything for us, the One who did the utmost for us.

We cannot understand you or know exactly what you are like, except what you have shown us in the Bible, through the generations of the community of faith, and especially through your Son, Jesus Christ.

Thank you that your faithfulness is recorded from earliest times to now, from year to year, from century to century, from millennium to millenium. Help us to record and remember your own work in our lives, so that we can look back with surety and say ‘yes, God was there’, and look forward in hope, saying ‘yes, God will be there’.

We recognise that we continue to make mistakes, despite our best intentions, and we want to say sorry. Sorry for the times when we spoke but should have stayed silent, and the times when we stayed silent and should have spoken.
Sorry for the words and actions that didn’t match up. Sorry for the hurt caused to others – deliberate or accidental.
Sorry for the things left undone that would bring our family and friends closer to you, and that would bring your kingdom closer, here on earth.

Father God, we thank you that when we recognise our faults and failings, you forgive us and give us a clean slate to start again.
Help us to look back in order to look forward, to see your faithfulness and trust you for the future, and to spend more time listening for your voice and sharing our thoughts, hopes, dreams and lives with you.

We pray all these things in and through the name of Jesus, who taught us when we pray to say

Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven
Give us this day our daily bread,
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil,
for thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory,
For ever, Amen.

Prayer of Thanks and Intercession

Glorious and Almighty God,
We give you thanks for your written word, for all that we read in Scripture. For the ways in which your faithfulness to people is demonstrated. For the inspiration we can receive from reading from it daily or as we have opportunity. For the lessons we can learn. Please help us to take hold of it, trusting in your faithfulness, being lifted up by a daily thought or word, learning from it when we study it or preach it. Thank you, too, for your gifts to us - the water that we drink and the food we eat, and the living water of your love, grace, and mercy.
We bring you now our prayers for the church, for the world, and for others.
We pray for our congregation, parish, and area, that you will work through us and those in our neighbouring churches, so that our lives reflect our faith, and are attractive to our families, friends and colleagues. Help them to overcome images of Christianity that are wrong or misleading – whether gained from long distant experiences, or stereotyped portrayals in the media. Help our church locally and nationally to combine the best of tradition with the best new ideas, so that we remain faithful to the message yet communicate it in fresh ways, through new music and different forms of worship.

We pray for our world, remembering areas of war, tension, deprivation and disaster, whether at the top of the headlines or not: like Iraq and its many difficulties, including relationships with Turkey; like Zimbabwe and those who have either fled the country or continue to struggle in a very difficult economic situation. We ask for wisdom, help and encouragement for national leaders, for international organisations, and for mission and relief agencies – particularly the Disasters Emergency Committee and others working in Indonesia, the South Pacific and other disaster areas – and we ask for help ourselves to act, whether in changing our shopping habits, or writing to politicians and ambassadors. We pray, too for our politicians and other civic leaders, that with all that has happened over recent months, they will be enabled to rebuild public trust, and to work for the good of those on the edges of society.

We pray for those known to us – relatives, neighbours and friends, that are having a particularly hard week or month, or year. Be with those who mourn, those who are ill, in hospital, or housebound. Comfort those who are having a difficult time in a relationship. And give us wisdom, and eyes and ears to see and hear where we can help – to speak or to listen, to hug or to send a note.

We pray, Lord, that each person who is part of this congregation will hear your word, and grow in their relationship with You, becoming people whose words and actions are more like you would have them be.

We pray all these things in the name of Jesus Christ, your Son, our Saviour. Amen

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