God of Abraham and Sarah, of Zechariah and Elizabeth, we come before you today with thanks and praise for the gift of a safe night and thoughtful rest; we gather as your children, saints and sinners alike, thanking you for this chance to come into your sanctuary to confess, to praise, to give, to learn and then be sent out into the world to witness to your love for us in Jesus Christ.
Father of Tender Mercies, we especially pray for those who are grieving the loss of a loved one this day; fill their hearts with Easter hope and a reminder we shall be reunited with you one day.
We are mindful of the many families and friends who have empty seats around their tables this holiday season. Those seats represent losses to death, broken relationships, or moves from the area whereby there was once someone to talk with, someone’s hand to hold, or someone simply to sit within the safety of their company. Fill that sense of emptiness they feel.
Members of this community are learning about new illnesses they have or who are in the middle of a protocol that will bring them health. Give them confidence in their doctors, patience with their treatment, and the grace to undergo the surgeries or the procedure’s implementation and outcomes. Please relieve the anxiety those who are ill feel so intensely; fill them with your Holy Spirit and bring wholeness and healing.
We hold up to you the men and women who are a part of one of the many communities of recovery in our church. There is so much we can learn from them if we would only train our ears and eyes to listen and see.
Send your loving hand and touch those who are unable to attend services due to illness, circumstance, or age. In-Spirit each of us to be mindful of their physical absence and move us to reach out in love.
Lord God, we pray for our nation and her divisions engraved in politics, racism, and economic injustice; let us remember we are stronger together than when we are alone. Hold our political leaders to high standards of ethics and justice; convict them to remember they are in service to the people and not to the power they can derive from their office.
Bless those who are a part of every portion of our food chain, Lord. For the farmers, for the laborers and migrants who pick our food, for those who transport our beef, lettuce, and cereal to the stores we shop. Touch those essential workers like grocery store clerks who fill the shelves and check us out. Oh Lord, there are so many involved in bringing us our morning cup of coffee.
Each of us comes today with personal joys and needs, O Christ. Hear us as we silently lift to you now…
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name, kingdom come, Thy will be done, earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.