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Saturday, July 9, 2016

"Transgression Speaks to the Wicked Deep in his Heart" - 10 July 2016


[This will be the congregational/pastoral prayer at Heritage Presbyterian Church this Sunday. You will notice the occasional ellipsis  "..." in various places in the prayer. These are moments of silence in the prayer for our people to silently mention names, and at times I will specifically mention people we are praying for. If you find this prayer useful, feel free to employ it in your church, Bible study, or personal use. Mike]

From Psalm 36
Transgression speaks to the wicked deep in his heart; there is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flatters himself in his own eyes that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated. The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit; he has ceased to act wisely and do good. He plots trouble while on his bed; he sets himself in a way that is not good; he does not reject evil. Our hearts, O God, grieve for those who have never repented of their sins, believed in Christ and avowed him as Lord….save them, work mightily penetrating their resistance and draw them into your family. / But we also pray for those whose words are trouble and deceit, who plot trouble on their beds, who set themselves in a way that is not good and don’t reject evil: Terrorists, snipers, guerrillas, and the KKK; thuggish leaders of nations and blood-spattered rebels; thieves, molesters, muggers, and the high-society promotors of death. Restrain and vanquish their bloodlust, and bring order and honor to fill the void.

Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mountains of God; your judgments are like the great deep; man and beast you save, O LORD. Stand up, O God, be present now with your church gathered here, world over, and especially in Namibia; Nauru; Nepal; Netherlands; Netherlands Antilles; New Zealand; Nicaragua; Niger; Nigeria; North Korea; and Norway. Protect her from persecutors and pursuers. Fill her with resilient strength to be faithful and firm in her witness of your Son, Jesus Christ. Bring your Spirit of Truth to guide her into all truth, and to turn her away from syncretism with, and surrender to, the pressures of godlessness and materialism.

How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light do we see light. We have feasted on the abundance of your house, and have drunk from the river of your delights; for you are our fountain of life, and in your light we see light. May we be a vital and valid channel through which your Gospel and good will way may go forth into Edmond, Oklahoma City, Putnam City, Warr Acres, Nichols Hills, Bethany, Luther, Jones, Yukon, Arcadia, and Carnegie. Shower your goodness on our Mega Sports VBS, Sunday School, Care Groups, Needlework Guild, our folks in New Mexico and Belgium, those who serve at Project 66, the Hope Center, Infant Crisis Pregnancy Center, Henderson Hills Baptist Church mercy ministries, and so forth.

Oh, continue your steadfast love to those who know you, and your righteousness to the upright of heart! Let not the foot of arrogance come upon me, nor the hand of the wicked drive me away. There the evildoers lie fallen; they are thrust down, unable to rise. Continue your steadfast love for those burdened by bleakness… loaded with lament…. fraught with fear…. encumbered with illness. Be with the families who, this past week, have lost loved ones through violence, in Dallas, Minnesota, and Baton Rouge. Bring about what is just and right, but also give healing and hope. The spirit of anger, anxiety, apprehension and aggression that seems to be wafting over our land – save us from it! Cause to blow in a fresh social mindset and outlook that will foster charity and cooperation. Lord, have mercy on us; Christ, have mercy on us; Lord, have mercy on us; and give us your peace!

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