As we come before you, Lord, there is a part of me that can’t help but feel the eagerness of a child, running and leaping into the arms of a loving parent to talk. And yet that nagging question remains – who am I that the Creator of the Universe and Lord of all Lords would know me? And care about me? About each and every one of us?
You placed the Sun, moon and stars in the sky
You created every form of life on earth and everywhere there is life
You are were before time, in time and will remain beyond time…
and that is only the beginning of the mysteries that surround you.
By sending Jesus, your Son, you have invited us into a loving, intimate and real relationship. And through his teachings, you encourage us to bring our needs before you.
We are invited to ask for daily bread.
For ourselves and the people around us. For the people in places where droughts, floods, earthquakes and tsunamis have kept farmers from producing enough food.
Lord, in your mercy, feed those who are hungry, whether they are within walking distance of us or half-way around the globe. May we who have more than enough be more than aware, may we be generous and compassionate as you are with us. Lead us into the lives of the hungry, lost and left behind, that we might offer them a meal and the Bread of Life.
We are invited to pray for deliverance from the times of trial, those times that reveal the evil and brokenness that seeks to rule this world.
Lord, in your mercy, show us the ways that we buy into evil too easily. Search our hearts and reveal to us the hatred, fear, jealousy, selfishness and self-righteousness that lead us to behave in ways that glorify ourselves or the world instead of you and your Kingdom. In the name of the true Light of the World, may we shine the light of love into the darkest places.
We are invited to pray for forgiveness of debts, for the year of jubilee that brings relief not only to ourselves but those who owe debts to us.
Lord, in your mercy, reveal to us our true indebtedness. The myriad ways you have paid our way in this world. Not so that we can attempt to buy our way out through good works and kind words, but so that we can give our whole-hearted thanks to you in word and deed. May we be as generous with others as you have been with us, offering forgiveness, love, hope and grace where anger, resentment and rejection are expected.
We are invited to ask for shelter and protection in those moments we are afraid of life.
And those moments we are afraid of death.
Lord, in your mercy, send your Spirit to comfort us and remind us that in life and in death we belong to you. On this day in particular we ask you to be with…
(insert specific names, details, as appropriate)
We entrust their lives to you, believing your promise to hear us when we gather and agree in prayer together.
We are challenged to let go of our will and trust in your will.
For our lives and livelihoods, for our families and friends, for our country and for this world.
Lord, in your mercy, help our unbelief. Help us truly let go of the desires we have that are tinged by our residence in this world. Help us to embrace your desires for this world and live as though we are already in the Kingdom to come.
We lift our hearts to you, giving you glory, honor and praise. And we give you every need, every desire, every dream in the name of Jesus the Christ.
AMEN (or lead into Lord’s Prayer)
Submitted by Laura Viau, Orlando, FL, MDiv student at Dubuque Theological Seminary