Prayer for August 8: Please pray with me. God of faithfulness, today we come to you to seek wisdom. Your ways are not our ways. Often we look outward shows of strength and might. We long to follow leaders who can destroy enemies. We want leaders who live by the ends justifying the means. We believe that the strong survive. This is the mantra of humanity throughout history. Yet, it has led to war, violence, death, and destruction. Why do we keep repeating the same mistakes? Why do we ignore your ways? Turn us towards you Lord and your ways. Save us from ourselves. Amen.
Prayer for July 6: Please pray with me. Holy One that we follow, lead us. These are difficult times. Very difficult times, but they are not something new. Humanity has struggled with these things many times before. We have had leaders who have are lacking. We have made arguments that dehumanize. We have carried out policies that devalue and separate and pit people against one another. This isn’t new. It is humanity’s story, over and over again. Come to us yet again Lord, as you promise to do. Guide your followers in the way of peace, mercy, grace, forgiveness, love. Guide our words and actions in ways that participate in the unfolding of your kingdom, not the expansion of the empire that is based on anger and fear. An empire that seeks to separate and divide. Lead us Holy God. Open our ears to hear, clear our eyes to see, cleanse our hearts to love. Give us wisdom. Help us to invite people into the kingdom and to wipe the dust from our feet of those insistent on expanding the empire. We pray for them. We will continue to love them in spite of their fear and anger of us. We will continue to prayer for them in spite of their desire to do things a different way. We will continue to live the way of peace in spite of their calls for violence and arms and war. We will continue to forgive them in spite of their blame and scapegoating. This is what it means to follow you. Give us the strength to follow you, without exception. Amen.
Prayer for March 15: Please pray with me. God of decision makers, today we lift all those tasked with making decisions. Making difficult decisions is not easy Lord. Often it sucks. But someone has to step up and make those decisions. Bless those who are willing to be uncomfortable and inconvenienced. Give them the strength they need to move forward. Let those who criticize decision makers be filled with grace and forgiveness when the decisions made are not what they expected or worse, turn out to be bad decisions. Let them be quick to praise good decisions too. Amen.
Prayer for December 19: Please pray with me. Holy One, you lead us in ways we often don’t expect. Yet, your leadership is nothing like what our human leaders offer more often than not. We lift up our leaders. Give them wisdom. Give them courage. Many would pray that our leaders have the “right” beliefs and thoughts. What good is being right theologically or ideologically if it causes harm people? What good is it to be right and miss the humanity of those around us. The world is not all black and white. There is a great deal of grey because we are dealing with people and people are messy. Give leaders hearts and heads that look out for the greater good, that recognize the most vulnerable among us, that seek to bring people together and not push them apart. We especially pray for leaders that are narcissistic in their outlook. Help them to be change. We also lift up all the followers of these leaders. Help them to recognize their own blindness. Help all who oppose such leaders – to hold them accountable, but to still recognize the humanity of these leaders. We are all sinners and fall short. Amen.
Prayer for December 14: Please pray with me. God of word and language, today we pray that language would be used to build up the kingdom, not used as a weapon to dehumanize, divide, and destroy. Language can be a weapon that leads to destruction, or it can be a healing agent. When power and the pursuit of power mixes with language, the consequences are not pretty. All we need to do is look at the news, social media, and our leaders. Yet, we are not innocent in this either. How often have we used language against a neighbor, a stranger, a friend, a loved one. Change the words of our hearts Lord. Change them to reflect love, forgiveness, and care. Amen.
Prayer for October 26: Please pray with me. God of vision, we ask that you open our eyes to see the vision of your kingdom unfolding before us. Let us see where we fit into that vision. Let us see how we empower others to participate in that vision also. Amen.
Prayer for October 17: Please pray with me. Renewing God, we ask that you renew our lives. Renew our worshiping communities. Renew our leaders and institutions. Renew our planet. But what is renewal God. What is it that we are actually asking for? In renewal we are asking for your holy presence in our lives. In your presence, that which is unholy will be washed clean and made new again. A fresh start. Renewal doesn’t come by focusing on what we don’t want. It comes by seeing the vision of what is possible and moving towards it. Give us this fresh start Lord. Amen.
Prayer for October 4: Please pray with me. God of the universe, you have to be laughing. You have got to be laughing at humanity and our ridiculous attempts to control things here on earth. That works out so well so often doesn’t it? Lord help us, for our own sake. Strip us of our egos that make us think we know all the answers. Open our hearts to recognize that the game of politics and partisanship is something in which no one wins in the end. Instead, radically reorient us to a different way of living and being Lord. A way of life in which we care for our neighbors, regardless of who they are. A way of life in which we care for creation, so that it will be around for future generations. A way of life in which we empower people rather than enslave them or make them dependent on our political systems that seek to consolidate power for its own sake. Help us to see and know how ridiculous our power struggles are, and how dangerous and damaging they are to people. Amen.
Prayer for September 26: Please pray with me. God of prosperity and poverty, today we pray all of your children, both rich and poor. The world has it’s definition of success and wealth. The world attaches material things to these terms. You however see success and wealth differently. The material things aren’t bad, but they are a tool to bring about your will for this world. Help us to use what you have entrusted us to be a part of your will. Amen.
Prayer for September 15: Please pray with me. God of calmness, today we pray for our anxious-ridden society. Instill in leaders a desire and the knowledge to create environments where people and societies can thrive. If leaders are a cause of the anxiety, touch their hearts to change, or cause people to change who is in leadership roles. Open our eyes to recognize anxiety in our society and systems. Help us to be a calm presence for others. Amen.