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Yearnings

God of heaven,
Creator of earth,
we confess before you
the yearnings that haunt us
deep in our hearts:
yearnings that we cannot name clearly;
yearnings that we cover over with much busyness;
yearnings that we try to satisfy with lesser gods;

yet, yearnings that will not let us go;
that keep drawing us toward you.

With the prophet,
we cry out,
“O, that you might rip open the heavens
and descend upon us,
making the mountains quake at your presence.”

Purify our hearts,
open our eyes,
renew our minds
so that
we may recognize you
when you come to us
in unexpected ways,
in circumstances that unsettle and trouble us.

We ask you to send your Spirit upon us
and in our midst
that we may have
the freedom and courage
to welcome you
and to live in joyful service
to the One whom you call
“My Beloved, my Chosen One”.
It is in his name we pray.

Gracious God
you do not need us
yet you choose not to be without us.
You have made us for yourself
and we can never go beyond the reach of your care.
Over and over again,
you have sought us out
and found us
when we have wandered far from you.

Such grace is beyond our comprehension
but we open our lives to your holy power.

You know how often we choose to go our own way without you.
You know the ways we cut ourselves off from your guiding presence.
You know the decisions we have made that have led us
where we did not intend to go.
You see us stumble
and fall
and hurt ourselves and others.

Lord, we are lost:
we need your forgiveness to find us again.
Welcome us once more
into your redeeming presence.
Reconcile us
with you
and with one another.

Keep us close to you,
living all our days
grateful for your mercy
and for your love
that is ever ready to welcome us home.

We pray in the name of Jesus
and through the power of the Holy Spirit
who is shaping us into the people of your grace.

God of mercy,
Saviour of the world,
Healer of our souls,
you come to us in our brokenness and sin.
You invite us to follow you into your realm of
love and reconciliation.

We open our lives to you
so that your Holy Spirit may do for us
what we cannot do for ourselves.

There are days,
weeks,
sometimes months,
when the sin and violence of this world overwhelm us;
when the hurt and anger silence our songs of praise to you.

On those days, Lord Jesus,
take us with you as you pray.
Show us your glory that even death cannot defeat.
Write deep into our lives your truth and love:
the truth,
the love,
that will one day
rule the world
and is
even now
making all things new.
So may we receive your grace and your courage
to keep us on this journey in faith.

As in our baptism you cleansed us and made us new,
so, today, we ask you to cleanse us again:
heal our lack of trust in your grace;
help us to start again where we have stumbled and fallen down;
restore in us the joy you have prepared for all your children.

Your claim upon us summons us into your promised newness.
Now we live in the wide open spaces of God’s steadfast love and mercy.
Thanks be to God!

God of time and of eternity,
we thank you for the signs in the most unlikely places
that you are in our midst,
bringing in your reign of love and healing and peace.

In Jesus, you invite us into the blessings of your reign
but there are times when we are afraid to say yes to the gifts you offer.
There are times when we are afraid your guiding hand
will lead us where we do not want to go.
There are times when we cannot see your new creation clearly enough
to dispel our fears.
There are times when we fear that letting go of what we know
will mean only loss.

Lord, have mercy.
Overcome our fears with your powerful grace.
Hold us fast in your faithfulness.
Ground us deep in your love.
Heal our blindness.

Then, do not leave us as we are.
Remake us.
Renew us in the image of your Son
so that we face all our days
with holy freedom and daring courage;
so the we live to your glory and honour and praise.

 

A prayer based on Luke 24: 44 -53

We try to live our lives in faith, O God,
but then giants invade the places
we thought we held secure and safe.
We name them terrorists who threaten our world
and bullies on the schoolyard or at work
and diagnoses from the doctor that change everything
and job loss and divorce and addictions.

We try not to be afraid,
but we are.

Good Shepherd,
rescue your lambs:
our weapons
our carefully constructed armour
have failed us.
You are our only hope.

Send your covenant love
into the midst of our apathy and despair.
Speak your liberating Word
against the words that have shut us down.
Show us your cross and resurrection
and the power you have for life
where no life seems possible.

Train us for faith —
deep, transforming faith
in you, the Living God,
for Jesus’ sake,
and through your Holy Spirit,
the Three-in-One,
the One-in-Three,
who cares for this world
and for us
with love that is powerful
beyond our imagining.

Tune our Hearts

Gracious Lord,
every morning we wake to a world
that is a gift from you.
Every day you immerse us in
your love
your salvation
your power.
Every situation we face is permeated
through and through
with your grace.

Our lives are lived
in the symphony of your steadfast love and faithfulness.

Tune our hearts and eyes and ears
to the words of hope you are singing this day.
Then, grow in us humility
and courage
and love
so we may join the chorus
that sings to your glory and praise.

We pray in the name of Jesus,
who teaches us to move each day
to the rhythms of your grace.

You draw us into the light of your presence, O Lord.
You speak your Word
and we learn to see the world through your eyes.

All week, we hear other voices —
voices that measure people’s worth
by how much they have accomplished;
or by how much they own;
or by how they fit into an agenda or system.

We are glad for your summons
but we come with vision that has been distorted
and hearts that have been bruised
and desires that have been turned away from your truth.

We look to you now
and to your promises
to re-define us again;
to re-vision us again;
to re-measure us again
according to your great love and mercy.

We wait — open, empty, at risk.
Speak your cleansing, renewing, re-defining Word into our lives.

Then, grant us words to witness to your healing truth and light
wherever your grace sends us.
We pray in the name of Jesus
who sees us truly
and loves us still.

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