Monday, September 7, 2015

Pastoral Prayer, September 6, 2015 - First Congregational Church of Los Angeles

Another summer, O God, has passed us by … and we wonder where all the time has gone … time speeds on heedlessly, and we’re swept along in its mighty currents … and in every moment, with every tick of the clock, every turn of the calendar, dear God, there you are, the contestant companion, who walks with us and talks with us along life’s narrow way … 

In moments of worship, O God, with just a word, a memory, a song, a Bible Story, we find ourselves transported, moved, caught up, in something wonderfully good and beautiful … 

If only for a moment, catching a glimpse of you out of the corner of our eye, and when we turn to see more, we only see our neighbor … as it should it be, O LORD, in whose image we all are formed … remind us day-by-day, that when we look for you, dear God, we find our neighbor, and when we look at our neighbor with kindly eyes, we find you!

We pray for our world, O God, … convulsed with violence and war - a child’s body washed ashore in distant Turkey shreds our soul with unspeakable sorrow … we would rather turn away, O God … but you firmly hold our face with your hands and turn us toward the image of the child … you turn us toward the refugees fleeing the maelstrom of war … you open our eyes to see, our ears to hear, and our hearts to bleed … and we are wiling, O LORD, to follow Christ, though always a little fearful … the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak … but we are yours, O God, and we give ourselves to you all the more.

And to one another … for we are not alone in the struggle for righteousness and peace … and we thank you, O God, for all whom you have raised up in this world to fight the good fight, women and men of good will all around the world … striving for humanity’s highest ideals of peace and goodness … with them, O God, we join hands - in prayer, in faith, in work, with all that we are, and all that we hope to be, for the sake of a better world.

Lead us, we pray, to be engaged and thoughtful … willing and eager to take up our cross … to follow in the footsteps of Christ where’re he lead … to bear witness to hope, to speak truth to power, and to welcome the little children. Amen!

1 comment:

  1. I have come to a place in my life where I greatly doubt. I have studied the bible, took a comparative religions course in college, was a deacon in my church and have tried to be a caring, peaceful and loving person.My only hope is that the "real" living Creator is not the petty, vengeful tyrant that so many believe in but the human and humane persona found in the Christ.