Prayers of the People/Intercession on Comfort-Zone
God of grace and God of glory on your people pour your power …Grant us wisdom, grant us courage for the facing of this hour. Lord—we need You … today, tomorrow and forever. We need you to heal those we love—we can’t do it. We need you to restore the injured and cure the ill, to lift the depressed, to strengthen care-givers and give hope to all. We need you to comfort the grieving.
We need you to be a shoulder to lean on and arms that hold, to be ears that listen and eyes that cry with, and to be the one whose resurrection brings hope and solace. Lord, may your church be that ‘Body of Christ.’ Lord—We need you to act.
We need you to revive your church and heal our land—we can’t do it. We need to move, even to force, your people out of our safe enclaves and out into the world. Make us more like you—the friend of sinners, who came to seek and save the lost; going to them with love and grace, forgiveness and the good news of the Kingdom of God.
We need your help to do the same; and we need you to heal our land—divided between red and blue, rich and poor, native and immigrant, old and young, conservative and progressive. Bring us together not just in tragedy but unite us in righteousness, holiness and justice in answer to the prophet’s prayer to:“Let justice roll on like a river and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream”(Amos 5:24).
Lord—We need you to act. We need you to redeem and relieve our pain—we can’t do it. There are those here today whose relationships dangle by a thread: with a distracted spouse, with a wayward child or distant siblings: bring honest and healthy reconciliation, Lord. And lots of us are wrapped up in fear: fear from losing a job, fear of financial ruin in hard economic times; fear of test results and the fear of being found out. Our fears are eating us alive. Lord—we need you to act. We can’t do it by ourselves. And Lord—we need to hear your voice. We need to hear and believe the Gospel that changes us; and we need to hear your Word and do your will. We need you, Lord … in these and all things. This is our desire. This is our prayer. Offered in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. AMEN
Lord Jesus—the same yesterday, today and tomorrow, who’s constantly doing “a new thing” that makes us sit up and take notice.
We admit, we’d be more comfortable with a predictable, controllable, less imaginative deity—but we’d also be less filled with wonder, delight and praise; and You’d be less worthy of our trust, obedience and worship. But You are worthy!–-which is why we come to You as we are.
We come asking You to change us—before we ask you to change anyone else or to change our circumstances. We come to present our friends and loved ones in need of comfort in the loss of dear ones.
Be a companion in loneliness, bringing hope in despair, light in the darkness, and peace at all times. Guide them into the new “normal” of the next part of their journey, and give those who walk with them special strength and grace.
We also bring to you the sick, the injured, and those recuperating from surgery: Heal them. Give them confidence in Your presence as their Savior and Healer by replacing their anxiety and pain with trust and peace.
Make them well—physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually; and encourage their caregivers. But there are other needs we can’t meet, but You can: such as a need for …Reconciliation in families between husbands and wives, children and parents; and Reconciliation in nations between ethnic groups or political factions. Keep your people faithful in witness, truthful in living and speaking, and compassionate, gracious, and loving at all times.
We pray for nations and leaders of nations–for our own and those who call other lands their home: help us look to the interests of those who have no voice, who often are the poor, the oppressed, the abused, and disenfranchised…and guide us to look to the greater interests of Your kingdom. And we pray for your church—for this church. Make us a faithful people, a courageous people, a gracious people, a creative people and a loving people…so that others may see You through us and encounter You in us. All this we pray in the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. AMEN