Pastoral Prayer for 8/17/14

God of mercy, you are the one who created the lands upon which we walk and the water with which life depends. Through your hand all of the universe came into being. You spoke, and it was so. Lord, I ask you to speak again speak again this day. Speak a word of life, not death; the world knows so much death. Speak a word of peace; the world knows so much war. Speak a word of Love; the world knows so much hatred. Speak a word of reconciliation; the world knows so much division.

You came to Elijah not in the cacophonous wind, not in the stone shattering earthquake, and not in the blazing fire, but in the sound of sheer silence. When we hear silence, help us to hear not the to-do lists of our day, the worries which we are so often preoccupied. Instead, let us hear your voice, calling us to act our part in the world, to be the body of Christ in this world going where he would go, healing where he would heal, loving whom he would love.

Reveal to us what we must do to heal this world of the pain of racism so that things like the hurt, cruelty, and violence which infected Ferguson this week might not happen here or anywhere. When we hear your voice calling us to action, help us to not be afraid of what must be done so we might continue to unfold your reconciling work in this world.

In the words of Francis of Assisi:
“Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace;

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

Where there is injury, pardon;

Where there is discord, harmony;

Where there is error, truth;

Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.”

Through these and in all things, help us to mean the words when we say “Your Will be done on earth.” AMEN

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