Prayers of the People

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Prayers of the People August 25, 2019

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Based on John 4:4-42, The Woman at the Well

These are our gifts, O God, brought for this day of worship, representing our appreciation for the lavishness of your gifts to us.  We are, indeed, astonished by your generosity, O God.  Your world teems with life and blooms with blessing.  We ask that you help us to utilize our share of this abundance with your dreams always in view.  We acknowledge that your dream is for our compassionate human interconnection and outreach.  Show us how to realize that dream.  Where we may still hang on to anger, resentment, mistrust, or indifference, remind us of the better way to which we are called as Christ’s followers.  Remind us that we cannot rest with harboring lesser motives than love.  And so we ask your help in better loving our world, our neighbors, our families, and in better loving even ourselves.

We do find we are often doubtful of ourselves, our place in your world and in your heart, O God.  Teach us to trust your compassion that we might know ourselves as your beloved children.  Reassure us that when we come to you for forgiveness or for redirection, that you gladly forget our faults and failings and help to reorient our lives. Show us that those things which worry us are so often small matters beside the power and permanence of the healing gifts you long to give us.

Convince us, we pray, of the futility of all our wearying excursions to our own wells, dragging bucket after bucket, attempting to fill and re-fill our lives with those things which never fully and finally satisfy.  We try to get our fill of success, or our fill of the esteem of others, or our fill of diversions and entertainments, and we find we drag our empty buckets back to those wells all too soon, dissatisfied, empty, thirsty for something more.  So let us trust in your offer to fill us with things that do satisfy.  Let us turn the tap of the inner well that bubbles over with your spirit.  Let us drink of that living water.  Let us stand in its shower and be bathed in the stream of grace that knows no end. 

Yes, we’ve come to sit beside your well today, where your spirit, your truth, your goodness, and your love may fill us to overflowing, and enable us to share your abundance.  We pray these things as Christ’s people, and in his words, we say together … the Lord’s Prayer …

Prayers of the People August 4, 2019

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Based on Luke 12:13-21 

We pray, dearest God, with deepest gratitude in our hearts, for the blessings, the nourishment, the comfort of having shared the meal your Son has offered us at this table today.  May the memory of this meal sustain us whenever we grow uncertain of ourselves and our futures, or even uncertain of you.  Remind us then that our hope in you is not in vain. 

Teach us to rely upon you and your promises.  Though we may not see the fulfillment of all our wishes and dreams, show us that you will stand ready to give us gifts we never imagined and grant us guidance and grace to safely move us beyond all our trials and difficulties.  We trust in you to guide our Senior Minister Search Committee, that their work may help to fulfill your vision for our church. 

With acknowledgement that you long for us to be one, committed, and caring human family, we pray for unity in our midst and for the repair of the chain that links your people, wherever it has been broken.  We pray for peace.  We pray for healing of bodies and minds and spirits.  We pray for forgiveness, and tolerance, and respect, and also for the love which Jesus demonstrated, and gave to us as so costly a gift.

Having received so much, let us take our place among grateful, trusting, and faithful people across the generations and spanning the centuries, who received Jesus’ astonishing message of love that engenders hope and trust, who lived in light of it, and who passed that treasured message on to others.  Let our grasp of that treasure help us to release our grasp of all earthly treasures that ultimately fail to satisfy.  Teach us not to store up for ourselves those things that will not make us rich in you, God.  Orient us always toward what matters most, toward what lasts and sustains and restores, toward all that is, finally, eternal. 

We pray today, with wonder at your plans for us and with humility that our prayers may be spoken in the name of your son.  Hear us today, as we pray in his spirit and using his own words, sing them together … the Lord’s Prayer.

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