"Do Not Lay Up..." Congregational Prayer - 1 September 2019

(Today's congregational prayer is directed by Jesus' words in Matthew 6.19-34)


Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6.19-21). We pray, Lord, for your church here and world over, including Grace Covenant Church, Westmoore Community Church, Lighthouse Foursquare Church, and Free Methodist Church of Edmond. Instead of our looking for earthly fame or fortune – earthly treasures, replenish her with your own steadying strength, stabilizing aid, resilient love, long-lasting commitment, unwavering godliness and sound doctrine, so that her treasure and heart will always be deposited with you. Through the prayers and work of your Church may your own open-handed help and guidance be shown to all so that sojourners and wayfarers may find shelter; that those blown about by the violence and predation of our vicious world may find sanctuary; that the lonely and deserted may find warmth; and that the broken, bruised and battered may find respite.

 No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money” (6.24). We pray for heretics and hucksters, for those who have never embraced your Son Jesus Christ, along with those who have once made a good confession and since then have made shipwreck of their faith… Shine the light of your mercy and grace into their hearts and heads, that they may no longer try to serve two masters or the wrong master, and bring them to new life in Christ and singlehearted loyalty to you.

Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all” (6.31-32). High King of Heaven, who is never caught unawares, even though the actions of humankind may grieve you; we sincerely implore you to grant our country safety from all enemies foreign and domestic, and cause the people of this nation to know that you are not a tight-fisted God, but an open-handed Father. We also ask you to pour out your merciful kindness on all nations that order, stability, and tranquility may be established for the good of all people, and for the good of your Church.

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (6.33-34). O God, heavenly Father, by your Son Jesus Christ you have promised to all those who seek your kingdom and your righteousness that you would care for their necessities; look on those who are straining under the weight of disease, ailments, poverty, penury, depression, mental or physical afflictions, and striving to keep their heads above water; … raise them up from their misery or misfortune, granting them strength and hope that they may be relieved from anxiety, and spend the rest of their lives serving, glorifying and enjoying you: now, always and forever. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.

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