Prayers for the 4th Week after the Epiphany (January 31-February 6, 2016)

We read the Watchword for the Week:
For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we
will see face to face. 1 Corinthians 13:12

Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty,
The earth is full of your glory.
We give thanks for your way is perfect,
And your will for our lives brings peace. 

Psalm 71:1-6
In you, O God, I take refuge;
  let me never be put to shame.
In your righteousness deliver me and rescue me.
Incline your ear to me and save me.
Be to me a rock of refuge,
       a strong fortress, to save me,
for you are my rock and my fortress.
Rescue me, O my God,
       from the hand of the wicked,
from the grasp of the unjust and cruel.
For you, O God, are my hope,
my trust, O God, from my youth.
Upon you I have leaned from my birth;
it was you who took me from my mother’s womb.
My praise is continually of you. 

Confession of Sin

Seeing God dimly is a part of human existence, but when we cease to search for greater clarity we lose the ability to make wise choices, and so it is that we sin. Let us make confession of those short-comings.

Gracious God we know that you are the creator of all that is and will be. We confess that your supreme wisdom set the planets into motion, set the galaxies in their places, and made the universe in all of its infinite majesty. We recognize that it is you who set forth life on this planet, and created each one of us with love and care. Forgive us when we lose sight of you. Forgive us when we think that it is our wisdom that makes our part of the world go around. Forgive us for the times when we have not feared your presence with us and have said and done things that lacked understanding and have hurt both ourselves and others. Bring us home to you, our rock and our redeemer.

God is faithful and just. God seeks only to forgive your sins and will not remember them. Rejoice, be glad, and give God praise.

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. 

This now is a time for the reading of a scripture passage.  If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read them now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

Let us profess our faith in the One who truly loves us:
I believe in the one true God, the Father of humanity,
who creates and sustains the universe in wisdom and power,
who calls us into being and into relationship with God by grace,
whose nature is love.
I believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God,
who lived that we might see God,
who died that we might be reconciled to God,
who rose that we might experience the life of God,
who freely accepts and welcomes all who come to him, not on the basis of their merit, but on the basis of his unconditional love.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
who is God present with us now,
who shows us our need for God,
who assures us of God’s love in all circumstances
who lives the life and love of Jesus Christ through us.
In this faith I will seek to live in harmony with God, with people everywhere, and with all of creation. Amen. 

(From the Moravian Book of Worship, the Liturgy for Creation, page 29. Used by permission from the Moravian Interprovincial Board of Communication.)

Triune God, seeing you more clearly sends us to bring good news to the oppressed,
and to bind the wounds of those broken in heart,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of prisons to those who are bound,
to announce the year of your grace,
to comfort all who mourn,
to give them a garland of consolation,
instead of the ashes of mourning,
the oil of gladness and healing,
and the rolling tears that wash away sorrow.
So may we be called oaks of righteousness,
trees that you plant to shade and sustain.
As the earth puts forth its blossom,
and as seeds in the garden spring up,
so you make justice flower,
and bear its fruit of peace among the peoples.
Lord of Life, in whom we live and move and exult for joy, guide our steps through the complexity of our lives.
Keep us mindful of your steadfast love for us, and ways in which we can make that love come alive in the hearts of those that we love, serve, and come in contact with this very day. AMEN.

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About Daily Prayers for Moravians

My name is Chris Giesler and I am blessed to be serving as Pastor of the Emmaus Moravian Church in Emmaus, PA. I am also privileged to serve as a Bishop of the world wide Moravian Unity. If you are ever in the area I would invite you to drop by for a visit. Please see our congregation's church web site at www.emmausmoravian.org. I live in Bethlehem, PA with my wife Tina. Our daughter, Martha, is a Moravian College graduate now teaching high school math. She is married to Matt, and now living in Harrisburg, PA. We also love being grand-parents to Addison (an inquisitive 6-year old) and Michael (an active 3-year old) and a new-born, Riley, who belong to our son Andrew, and his wife Amy.
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