Monday, November 24, 2008

Prayer of the People 11.23.08 at Eastern Ave CRC

my prayer of the people yesterday at Eastern Ave CRC:

Blessed are you, O Lord, King of the universe,
in the beginning you created, and day by day you sustain, the whole cosmos.
Great is your faithfulness;
Your mercies are new every morning.

O mighty God, like Job we tremble before you, like Job we sometimes raise our fists at you, like Job, we both tremble and raise our fists in the same faith journey, sometimes in the same hour.
Give us the courage of Job to know that lament, too, is a form of praise, as we pour out our tears before your throne, and submit our deepest doubts, secrets, and sores, to the one who is most worthy to know them and hear them, and soothe them.
And so, with your apostles, we pray, 'Lord, to whom shall we go? Yours is the way of eternal life.'

Give us Job's humility and eagerness to acknowledge his smallness in your vast universe.
And God, give us Job's unconditional devotion, a fierce faith that stays strong through the storms, and doesn't depend on the state of the stock market and abundance of material comforts.
And so, Lord, as we turn our hearts to you in Thanksgiving this week,
don't let us be content to merely list our possessions and relationships, but drive us to deeper awe and gratitude for your power and love, for what you have done for us, for the kingdom you are building in the midst of a fallen world, for the triumphant return of Christ that you promise.

Remind us, Lord, that no matter how bad the economic news sounds, we remain an abundantly, often indulgently wealthy nation in the midst of a world full of desperate poverty. And yet, Lord, recent economic events put a very real strain on us, our lives at work, our relationships at home, as the ache of uncertainty gnaws at our hearts. Comfort us, strengthen us, and, as you did with Job, release us from our illusions of self-reliance, and remind us that our only future lies in your promises. Guide our government and business leaders as they make difficult decisions about daunting crises; bless President-elect Obama as he prepares to assume the presidency in the face of immense challenges. Give peace and wisdom to him and his advisers, to congressional leaders, to Congressman Ehlers and the many newly elected congress members who will join him soon on Capitol Hill.

Lord, our fears are as big as the global economy, and as specific as the
particular griefs and joys in our church family.


We say with the psalmist, 'What are human beings, that you are mindful of us and care for us?'
and we sing with your children in exile, 'Great is your faithfulness.'
Put this humility on our hearts and this awe on our lips this week, and all our days.

We pray through Jesus Christ, in the power of the Holy Spirit,


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