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Sunday, May 7, 2017

"O Lord God, Our Refuge" - 7 May 2017


O Lord God, our refuge, our hiding place in the storm, our mighty Savior triumphant over your and our foes; we give thanks to you and declare that your steadfast love endures forever!

Mighty Ruler and only real Potentate; king of kings and Lord of lords (1Timothy 6.15); who elevates nations and empires to employ them for your own purposes, and topples them when they have soured and sunk into sin: we pray for our country and our leaders to include our State Representatives such as Scooter Park; David Perryman; John Pfeiffer; and Eric Proctor. Preserve us but not in our sin. Preserve us as a nation of justice and righteousness, even if it’s only a civil righteousness! Grant us to see our self-destructive ways with honesty and clarity, and to turn from them, just as Nineveh turned from its ruin at the preaching of Jonah. Hear our prayer, O LORD.

Kingship belongs to the LORD, and he rules over the nations (Psalm 22.28)! Rule over, and where necessary, overrule the actions and advances of the leaders of this world, to include President Andrzej Duda (And-shre Du-da) of Poland; President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of Portugal; and Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar. And hasten the day when the whole earth will worship you, all nations obey you, all tongues confess and bless you, and men, women, girls and boys will love you and serve you in peace through Jesus Christ our Lord. Hear our prayer, O LORD.

We pray on behalf of your Church world-over; for this congregation; St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church; St. David’s Episcopal Church; St. Elijah’s Orthodox Church; and St. George’s Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Help us to wait on you, and as we wait on you to renew our strength; cause us to mount up with wings like eagles; make us to run and not be weary; to walk and not faint (Isaiah 40.31). And we implore you to be with Christian leaders – pastors, evangelists, elders, Bishops, priests, theologians, Bible teachers, and seminary professors all over this round world. May none be like the prophets Ezekiel spoke against, who prophesied from their own hearts; foolish prophets who followed their own spirit, and saw nothing! Who were like jackals among ruins, seeing false visions and lying divinations; that misled your people, saying, ‘Peace,’ when there is no peace; who disheartened the righteous, but encouraged the wicked (Ezekiel 13). O dear God, guide in truth and righteousness all Christian leaders. Hear our prayer, O LORD.

We urgently and earnestly implore you to grab the hearts, hopes, aims and affections of our neighbors and networks, our family and friends who are looking for love in all the wrong places or dead in their trespasses and sins…. Hear our prayer, O LORD. 

Lord, who keeps faith forever; executes justice for the oppressed, gives food to the hungry; sets the prisoners free; opens the eyes of the blind; lifts up those who are bowed down; loves the righteous; watches over the sojourners; upholds the widow and the fatherless, and brings the way of the wicked to ruin (Psalm 146.6-9): we pray for all in need, whether at homeless shelters, under bridges, pregnant and alone, sick and sore…bring them aid and assistance. And finally, we are grateful for the work of organizations like Compassion International, International Justice Mission, and MTW’s ministry to Street Children. Fund them; supply them with all of the able people they need; open doors that have been shut; grant them joy in their labor and success in their endeavors. Hear our prayer, O LORD.

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