Prayers for the 14th Week of Pentecost

The watchword for the week:
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits.                                                Psalm 103:2

Unto you, O God, we lift our praise.
Your ways are marvelous, and we seek to walk in your path.
This day gives us the chance to honor you,
To share with others your never ending love.
Psalm 103:1-13

 1 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
2 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and do not forget all his benefits—
3 who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the Pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
5 who satisfies you with good as long as you live
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
6 The Lord works vindication and justice for all who are oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the people of Israel.
8 The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 He will not always accuse,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
10 He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far he removes our transgressions from us.
13 
As a father has compassion for his children,
so the Lord has compassion for those who fear him.

Unto that compassionate God, let us confess our Sins:
We, in our human frailty, have a hard time understanding your steadfast love O God. We confess that too often our love comes with strings attached, and is based on what can be gained from sharing it. We, in our human frailty, have a hard time understanding how you can be so slow to anger when ours comes so easily.   Gracious God, forgive our lack of steadfastness, forgive our shortsightedness, and forgive our unfaithfulness. Guide us to walk in your ways, to sing your praise, and to share your love freely.  

Thanks be to God that God’s love for each of us is not based on our faithfulness but rather on God’s steadfast love. My friends, know that your sins are forgiven, go therefore and walk in the light of the Lord, and give praise:
With joyful hearts we give praise to God by saying: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows: 

O Lord, hear us now as we brothers and sisters in Christ pray together.
Creator of all humanity, we call you Holy, and seek to worship you all the days of our lives. We pray that the ways of your heavenly kingdom may be made real in the world that surrounds us. May the bread that we need for today be made available for us and all who are hungry; and may you forgive us, just as we are able to forgive those who have sinned against us. In the time of moral testing, may we listen first for your voice calling to us, instead of the call of the world; take from us the self-centeredness of our society. This world, and all that is in it, always has been and always will be yours, help us to lose ourselves to you and your kingdom. Help us to find who we truly are as we walk in your light. Amen.

 And now, most merciful God, we ask you to continue extending your grace and favor towards us;
Let the sun of your gospel never go down out of our hearts;
Let your truth abide and be established among us forever.
Help our unbelief, increase our faith, give us hearts to consider your many gifts to us.
In faith clothe us with Christ, that he may live in us, and that your name may be glorified in the sight of all the world.
Keep us mindful of your steadfast love and ways in which we can make that love come alive in the hearts of those that we serve and come in contact with this very day.
May Christ, and him crucified,
Remain our confession of faith. Amen.

 

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Prayers for the 13th Week After Pentecost

The watchword for the week:

Give me understanding, O God, that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart. Psalm 119:34

From the busyness that our jobs bring us
We gather to fix our attention on God’s way.
From the busyness that fills our daily lives,
We gather to fix our attention on God’s way.
From the distractions that re-order our life’s priorities,
We gather to fix our attention on God’s way.
From the slumber into which our faith can sometimes fall,
We gather to fix our attention on God’s way.

Psalm 119:33-40
33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes,
and I will observe it to the end.
34 Give me understanding,
that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart.
35 Lead me in the path of your commandments,
for I delight in it.
36 Turn my heart to your decrees,
and not to selfish gain.
37 Turn my eyes from looking at vanities;
give me life in your ways.
38 Confirm to your servant your promise,
which is for those who fear you.
39 Turn away the disgrace that I dread,
for your ordinances are good.
40 See, I have longed for your precepts;
in your righteousness give me life.

Let us humbly confess our sins.
Gracious God, we affirm that your way is perfect. The Biblical witness and the life of Jesus Christ give us the pattern by which we should live out our faith, but we have chosen to walk on our own path. We confess that we have found it all too easy to follow the way of our culture and have made keeping your statutes an option, rather than an expectation for our lives.

So we humbly ask that you create in us a clean heart, O God, and place within us that understanding that will help us to see your way and to observe it with our whole heart. Lord have mercy on us.

The Lord says to us: I will forgive your iniquity and remember your sin no more. Peace be with you.
With grateful hearts we say: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Let us pray together:
Creator of us all, we praise your name because you have lovingly made each one of us. May your intended purpose be made real here on earth, even as it is already done in heaven. Feed us today with those things that we truly need, and may we share our abundance with others. Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who have done wrong to us. In times of temptation, may we know of your life giving strength, and keep us from all evil. Gracious God, this is your kingdom, and we acknowledge your power and glory, both now and forever more. AMEN.

Just as God created an Eden in which all was made to work together,
God has created a pattern of life which is intended to bring us to wholeness.
That wholeness was shown to us as Jesus brought the law of God into human form.
Jesus showed us a way of grace and forgiveness even though life was made difficult for him by the sin of the world.
We pray that God might awaken in us the desire to follow his path more closely amidst the temptations and difficulties of our lives.
Come, Holy Spirit, show us the way, the truth, and the life.
Whatever we do, therefore, whether in word or deed, let us do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Thanks be to God. Amen.

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Prayers for the 12th Week in Pentecost (August 31-September 6, 2014)

The watchword for the week:
Jesus says, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” Matthew 16:24

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God,and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
And also with you.
Praise the Lord and give thanks to Him for all his mercies.
In Jesus Christ God grants us the forgiveness of sin and shows us a new way of living.
We seek to respond to that love by following the way of the cross.
We will rejoice and worship God with all our heart.
Hear now the call of God to draw near to His loving embrace.
We will rest ourselves in God and do all that He asks.

Psalm 26:1-8

1 Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have walked in my integrity,
and I have trusted in the Lord without wavering.
2 Prove me, O Lord, and try me;
test my heart and mind.
3 For your steadfast love is before my eyes,
and I walk in faithfulness to you.
4 I do not sit with the worthless,
nor do I consort with hypocrites;
5 I hate the company of evildoers,
and will not sit with the wicked.
6 I wash my hands in innocence,
and go around your altar, O Lord,
7 singing aloud a song of thanksgiving,
and telling all your wondrous deeds.
8 O Lord, I love the house in which you dwell,
and the place where your glory abides.

Let us humbly confess our sins.
As we think of the life of Jesus we are awed by the sacrifice that he made on our behalf. By accepting the way of the cross he took upon himself the sin of the world. With this love fixed in our minds and as we read the words of this week’s Psalm we confess that we have not always lived up to the standard that you have set for us. We have often shunned the way of the cross and a life of integrity for what seemed like an easy path. By what we have both said and done, and by what we have left undone, we have not always been your followers and for that we are truly sorry. Strengthen us as we resolve to live more responsively to your gracious intent toward us and the world.

My friends, the Biblical message is clear: Christ has died, Christ is risen, and Christ will come again that we might live in newness of life; new life both here and in the world yet to come. Let us give thanks to God.
Praise be to you triune God, for you have lovingly created us, compassionately redeemed us, and graciously empower us to live the life of the cross. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Together let us affirm our faith in the words of the Nicene Creed.

We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven:
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.
He has spoken through the Prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Let us go from here, take up the cross, and live a life that gives witness to that which we believe.
Thanks be to God. Amen.

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Prayers for the 11th Week after Pentecost

The watchword for the week:

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God – what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2

In the midst of our busy lives we pause to place God at the center of all that we are.
We lay aside the menial tasks as well as the important decisions for just a moment as we focus our attention on God’s grace.
Holy God, hear us now,
Listen to us as we lift up the prayers and petitions of our hearts, and may you open our ears so that we might hear your voice speaking to us.

Psalm 138

1 I give you thanks, O Lord, with my whole heart;
before the gods I sing your praise;
2 I bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness;
for you have exalted your name and your word above everything.
3 On the day I called, you answered me,
you increased my strength of soul.
4 All the kings of the earth shall praise you, O Lord,
for they have heard the words of your mouth.
5 They shall sing of the ways of the Lord,
for great is the glory of the Lord.
6 For though the Lord is high, he regards the lowly;
but the haughty he perceives from far away.
7 Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve me against the wrath of my enemies;
you stretch out your hand, and your right hand delivers me.
8 The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.

Let us humbly confess our sins.
Gracious Savior, we bow our heads before you and confess that too often we have forgotten that we are yours. Sometimes we so closely conform ourselves to the world around us that we begin to think that you are not aware of the choices that we make with our lives. We confess that too often our first thought is financial security rather than sacrifice for your kingdom. We confess that we often hold being right as a higher virtue than being compassionate. We confess that too often we accept the notion that immediate gratification of our needs and wants is more satisfying than seeing your will be known and done. For these things we ask your forgiveness and we also ask for your strength. Give us clear minds and open hearts so we may choose what is good and acceptable and perfect. Remind us to be who You would have us to be regardless of what we are doing or who we are with. Enfold us in your arms so that we might feel your love for us and for the world.
My friends, the Biblical message is clear: Christ died, Christ is risen, and Christ will come again that we might live in newness of life; new life both here and in the world yet to come. Let us give thanks to God.
Today we praise the God who created us, the God who is redeeming us, and the God who is sustaining us. Glory be to the triune God. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

O Lord, hear us now as we, sisters and brothers in Christ, pray together.
Our Father in heaven, praise be your name; your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.

The Apostle Paul writes:
1 I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
2
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.
3 For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of yourself more highly than you ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.
4 For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, 5 so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another.
Romans 12:1-5

As one body then let us together go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
Thanks be to God. Amen.

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Prayers for the 10th Week after Pentecost (August 17-22, 2014)

The watchword for the week:
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you. Psalm 67:5

O Lord, let my soul rise up to meet you
as the day rises to meet the sun.
May the love of the Lord our God be upon us.
Christ, inspire the work of our hands;
May the mercy of the Lord our God be upon us.
Christ, strengthen the work of our minds.
May the grace of the Lord our God be upon us.
Christ, empower the work of our hearts.

Psalm 67

1 May God be gracious to us and bless us
and make his face to shine upon us,
2 that your way may be known upon earth,
your saving power among all nations.
3 Let the peoples praise you, O God;
let all the peoples praise you.
4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy,
for you judge the peoples with equity and guide the nations upon earth.
5 Let the peoples praise you, O God;
let all the peoples praise you.
6 The earth has yielded its increase;
God, our God, has blessed us.
7 May God continue to bless us;
let all the ends of the earth revere him.

Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God.
Almighty and most merciful Father,
like lost sheep we have strayed from your holy ways, we have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts as we have disregarded your holy laws, we have left undone those things which we ought to have done, and we have done those things which we ought not to have done.
Have mercy on us O Lord, , as we know that you forgive those who humbly confess their faults, and that you restore those who are penitent. Strengthen us, O most merciful God, that from this day forward we live a godly and righteous life, to the glory of your holy Name. Amen.

Almighty and merciful Lord grant us absolution and remission of all our sins, true repentance, amendment of life, and the grace and consolation of his Holy Spirit. If anyone is in Christ they are a new creation; the old has passed away, behold the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. Amen.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

O Lord, hear us now as we, brothers and sisters in Christ, pray together.

Our Father in heaven, praise be your name; your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.

Lord, keep our Church under your care;
And guide us in the way of justice and truth.
Let your way be known upon earth;
Your saving health among all nations.
Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten;
Nor the hope of the poor be taken away.
Create in us clean hearts, O God;
And sustain us by your Holy Spirit.
Shout for joy all people of God, rejoice all the earth! The glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people together will see it. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
Blessed be the name of the Lord in whom we live, labor, and love. Amen.

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Prayers for the 9th Week of Pentecost (August 10-16, 2014)

The watchword for the week:

Jesus spoke to the disciples and said, “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.” Matthew 14:27

Come, let us worship and bow down,
Let us give thanks to the One who is with us in the midst of the storms of life.
We can take comfort in knowing that the Spirit of God is upon us today.
Give us, O God, the grace to bring you the sacrifice of a broken and contrite heart, which you will not despise.

Psalm 85:8-13
8 Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people,
to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.
9 Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land.
10 Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet;
righteousness and peace will kiss each other.
11 Faithfulness will spring up from the ground,
and righteousness will look down from the sky.
12 The Lord will give what is good,
and our land will yield its increase.
13 Righteousness will go before him,
and will make a path for his steps.

In truth and honesty, let us draw near to the throne of grace and confess our sins to God.
Forgive us Lord when we have put our material possessions as gods in our lives.
Forgive us Lord for making idols of our accomplishments, and for placing others before you as primary in our lives.
Forgive us Lord when the words spoken from our lips have not brought honor to you or your kingdom.
Forgive us Lord when we have forgotten or refused to take our rest in you.
Forgive us Lord when we fail to respect those who have passed the faith on to us.
Forgive us Lord when we injure or damage the emotional lives of others.
Forgive us Lord when we fail to keep the promises made to even those most close to us.
Forgive us Lord when we hoard our wealth at the expense of others.
Forgive us Lord when we lie to conceal our own mistakes.
Forgive us Lord when we spend time and energy wanting things that we don’t need.
Forgive us Lord when we fail to do your will.

The Lord your Redeemer says: Now your guilt is gone and your sins are forgiven. Let us give praise to God.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord, hear us now as we, brothers and sisters in Christ, pray together.
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.

Lord, as we experience the ups and downs of life,
Help us to put our trust in you.
As we come to doubt our abilities,
Help us to know that you make us complete.
As we fear for the health and welfare of those that we love,
Help us to know that you are with both them and us.
As we come to doubt that we are making a difference in your Church,
Help us to know that this is your Church and we simply have to be faithful to your call to us.
As we come face to face with our own sinfulness and mortality,
Help us to know that your grace gives us new life both here, and in the world yet to come.
Shout for joy all people of God, rejoice all the earth! The glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people together will see it. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
Blessed be the name of the Lord in whom we live, labor, and love. Amen.

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Prayers for the 8th Week of Pentecost (August 3-9, 2014)

the watchword for the week together:

The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made. Psalm 145:9

How wonderful are your ways, loving God.
We look at the wonderful world which you have created, and we are filled with awe.
While we marvel at the complexity of this creation we are even more amazed at the love that you have for all of it, including humanity.
Compassion and steadfast love is what sets you apart from all else in this world. How wonderful you are.

Psalm 145:8-9,14-21

8 The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made.
14 The Lord upholds all who are falling, and raises up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. 16 You open your hand, satisfying the desire of every living thing.
17 The Lord is just in all his ways, and kind in all his doings.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
19 He fulfills the desire of all who fear him; he also hears their cry, and saves them.
20 The Lord watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy.
21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, and all flesh will bless his holy name forever and ever.

In truth and honesty, let us draw near to the throne of grace and confess our sins to God. God of unending love we come to you with a humble heart and a contrite spirit asking for your grace to be showered upon us. As we consider the pattern of your spirit we feel inadequate to even approach you, but hear us as we ask your forgiveness. We confess that we have not always reflected your compassion to those around us. While we find it easy to be compassionate towards those whom we love, we find that it is harder to do that with those who we consider to be our enemies. We find it easy to keep a score of those who have wronged us, while we ignore the pain that we have inflected on others. Help us to look first at how we can best transform ourselves into a more faithful reflection of your love, instead of how we can change those with whom we have conflicted feelings. We hunger for your grace and love, feed us this day. Amen.

The Lord your Redeemer says: Now your guilt is gone and your sins are forgiven. Let us give praise to God.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

O Lord, hear us now as we, brothers and sisters in Christ, pray together.
Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be your name, your kingdom come,
Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.

Lord, you now have set your servant free
to go in peace as you have promised;
for these eyes of mine have seen the Savior,
Whom you have prepared for all the world to see.
A Light to en-lighten the nations,
And the glory of your people Israel.
Send forth your Spirit, Lord,
Renew the face of the earth.
Creator Spirit, come and enable us to have compassion on others.
Feed our hungry hearts.
Lord, hear our prayer,
And let our cry come to You.
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God! Amen.

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