Pastoral Prayer - March 22nd, 2015

Good and Gracious God,

We give you thanks today, as we should everyday.  We give you thanks for the signs that confirm you are indeed sovereign and your kingdom will always prevail. May these signs encourage us to be determined in working toward justice and mercy for all who need it, and particularly for all who question its possibility in this world.  Above all, we are thankful that when we were on the side of the road....broken, hurting, and dying...you did not pass us up.  You did not hesitate to make things right or to extend us compassion.  No....you picked us up, you anointed and healed us with oil and wine, gave us this place...this church….to be healed in, to grow stronger in.  And it seems no matter the hospital bill…you just keep on paying it…even when we don’t follow the doctor’s orders.

So forgive us for this, Son of Man.  Forgive us when we arrogantly ask what we must do to inherit eternal life, when you have already done all that can be done.  Forgive us for even thinking that we can earn an inheritance…because an inheritance is something that can never be earned…it’s just something you’re born into.  Forgive us for forgetting where we come from…and have mercy on us when we pass by our brothers and sisters who are broken…and hurting…and dying on the side of the road of life, wherever we are headed.

So comfort and guide us Great Councilor, as we lift up those brothers and sisters on that road, as well as those in our midst.  Those that are suffering from mystery illnesses…those that are enduring the treatment for those illnesses…and those that are experiencing some road rash they got while traveling on the road of our existence…we lift them all to you and ask that your mercy and grace will heal them from the inside out.

Cause the truth is, God, we are all on that road…we all need each other…and we most especially need you.  Which is why you gave us these words to pray for each other and with each other when we speak in one voice…

Our Father who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name.

Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us,
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.

Amen