August 22, 2021
God of hope and love, God of Grace and Compassion, we stretch out our hands in faith that you receive us even in our desperation, even in our fatigue, even in our fear and doubt, even words for prayers are hard to come by.
We have been consumed this week going from one story of disaster to the next. We see the pain that is experienced in conflicts both manmade and natural. Our eyes and souls are weary from fights of violence, fights with division amidst pandemic, fights with fires, earthquakes, and storms. We tend toward despair as so many cry for help, yet we feel helpless. With so many who cry for comfort, yet we only feel disturbed. With so many who cry for peace, yet we fear violence stalks us.
We don’t pray to be numb, oh God, but to be useful. We have consumed but a few stories, where you receive all creation, so much more than we could ever bear. We cry out then with you and the Spirit who intercedes with sighs too deep for understanding out of concern for this world. Our prayer is that we might be useful, for you are the God of peace and reconciliation. The God who so loves the world you have shared in the suffering of the vulnerable and call the powerful to listen. You are God who calls all of us to become builders of a new kin-dom.
So we pray our lives might be put to work. Help us remain disturbed enough that when our moment arrives, we will not have been so overwhelmed that we cannot move. But feed and strengthen your people by your word, let us be agents of hope in a despairing world, agents of lament in a denying world, agents of truth for those who prefer their own narrative. Long has the story been written, help us in faith to say joy is coming and no hand will stand against it.
Bring comfort and health where we feel we cannot. Be with those who grieve the loss of loved ones this day or fear loss in the days ahead. Watch over all those who attempt to make plans in this season of uncertainty; parents, students, congregation and workplaces. Watch over health care workers, service members and their families, citizens and strangers alike. May we take opportunities to be compassionate this week, and help us through these days conscious of the good before us even as seasons of hurt overlap. May we consume the words of spirit and life that you have for us this day, and carry that life and spirit into the days ahead.