Pastoral Prayer - 1 December 2013

{This was the Pastoral Prayer from 1 December 2013. Feel free to use it if you can. Mike}
Lord God, Father of lights and Giver of every good and every perfect gift, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change; by your own will you brought us forth by the word of truth that we might be a kind of firstfruits of your creatures. Thank you, Father, from the depths of our hearts! And help us to be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger (James 1.17-19). O Lord, hear our prayer.

Holy God, Father strong to save, we beseech your kindness for your church world over, including {list local congregations and some in your denomination or association}. Though we your people are often a mess and quite messy, deeply marred by sin and the works of the flesh, show your people mercy, forgiving our sins, healing our lacerations, reorienting our ambitions and desires; direct and rule us according to your will, comfort us in all of our afflictions, defend us from all error, and lead us into all truth. O Lord, hear our prayer.

We ask you to restore  those who have wandered away from the Christian Faith; reclaim  those who have become ensnared in deception; and rescue those who do not know you & have not obeyed the Gospel of Jesus Christ, …; O Lord, hear our prayer.

We bring before you those of our own families, of our friends and from our fellowship whose aging is increasingly becoming a challenge…; those whose infirmities are disheartening…; those whose circumstances are demoralizing…; those whose grief is heartbreaking…; raise them up, give them help, show them your lovingkindness, and grant them to be restored body and soul in Jesus Christ. O Lord, hear our prayer. 

We are grateful for how you have prospered our nation over the years, preserving us from privation and propping up what is weak and fragile. Keep this nation from falling headlong into the sinkhole of secularism and statism, restrain us from exporting injustice, godlessness and immorality, and impel us to be a land of the free and brave, the upright and fairminded. O Lord, hear our prayer.

We acknowledge that this coming week launches us into a season that is supposed to be filled with joyfulness and gratefulness, but normally this time can become the recipe for family strain, domestic turmoil, distressing memories, and cavernous regrets; we humbly ask, as your children, to go before us into this time of year, working on our hearts and memories. Help us to be gracious with others – even with pesky family members – and where there is sorrow and sadness, give an unshakeable comfort. O Lord, hear our prayer.

All of these prayers we offer through your Son, Jesus Christ, as we now sing: 
Hear our prayer, O Lord, 
hear our prayer, O Lord; 
Incline Thine ear to us, 
and grant us Thy peace. Amen. 
(Trinity Hymnal #728)


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