Sunday 27th July 2014 – Pentecost 7A

It’s been a long holiday period for me so today I’m getting back into the swing.   Over the next few months I will be sharing worship with an assistant, so prayers may well not be as prolific in the past.   I’m also changing the format of how the prayers appear so there will no longer be a separate entry for each prayer.   Instead in a paragraph at the beginning of each entry there will be an indication of what there is below.   As always, please find them free for use – I’m writing anyway so more than happy that others borrow ideas that may suit their own situations.   I certainly don’t promise that all or any will be brilliant.

So below today you will find Call to Worship, Opening Prayer, Offertory Prayer and Prayers of the People.

Call to Worship

As the words of the Lord

unfold around us,

He brings light

to our understanding.

Shaping life

with command, promise and love

the Lord is merciful

in the direction offered.

In the times

when tears of frustration and failure flow,

the presence of the living God

enlightens the overwhelming darkness

to offer seeds of hope and expectation.

Let us worship the Lord

who has called us

into the presence

of the kingdom of Heaven.

 

Opening Prayer

Lord of the story,

from the beginning of time

You have loved and shaped this creation

with the presence of Your voice.

You spoke

and light and dark,

land and sea,

plant and animal,

day and night

all took their shape and place

at Your command.

In narrative, folktale,

drama, tragedy, comedy,

fable, myth and parable

the presence of the kingdom of heaven

within human life and experience

is related in the words of Scripture,

old and new.

It is an unfinished tale,

and in lives shaped by Your Holy Spirit,

the story of Your creative presence

continues

as Your words are voiced

in the following of Christ’s path.

It is our words,

spoken and unsaid,

that give voice

to hurt and harm.

 

Our stories

tell of the wounds we bear

and the sorrows we carry,

and as we listen for the soothing balm

that leads us to offer forgiveness,

we come seeking Your forgiveness

for the pain and anguish

we have caused in the lives of others.

Forgive us for keeping

the treasure of Your presence

to ourselves,

believing that in sharing

Your words

that their truth and value diminishes.

 

Silence

 

In Your mercy

You inspire us and renew us

in the story that will unfold through our lives.

Amen.

 

Offertory Prayer

God of heaven,

as Your story unfolds in our lives

hidden within each of us

the treasure of the kingdom of heaven

reveals itself

to those in need of Your presence.

In the gifts we make this day,

we give from the treasure we have been given,

so that Your life-giving word

may offer joy to others,

in Christ’s name.

Amen.

 

Prayers of the People

Presence of Heaven,

found in the ordinary of our existence,

we praise You

for Your tenacity of care for creation.

You who is the treasure

who brings strength to our weaknesses,

we bow our heads

shaped by the awe

of the moments of the revealing

of the kingdom of heaven

in the simplicity

of all that surrounds each day.

Remembering the times

when we have been laid low

by circumstance and expectation,

we thank You for Your presence

bursting through the boundaries

we have placed for protection,

that have given us new vision

and insight of the plans You have made.

 

Compassionate God,

in our prayers

we remember those

who seek Your treasure in their lives.

We pray for those

seeking to grow in faith,

or longing for a spiritual experience.

 

Lord, Your will be done,

YOUR KINGDOM COME IN US.

 

We pray for those

who are living in hardship of persecution,

for those who experience peril and danger.

We pray for the people of Gaza,

who find their life burdened by restrictions and barriers;

trapped in a cycle of movement and destruction.

And we pray for the people of Israel,

knowing that a people is more than a government or a state.

Strengthen those who seek Your kingdom

in the midst of separation and conflict,

that by striving for peace and freedom,

the light of Your love

may bring peace and hope to the situation.

 

Lord, Your will be done,

YOUR KINGDOM COME IN US.

 

We pray for those

who carry the burden of grief,

and remember those

for whom each day is a reminder

of all they have lost.

As the story of the loss of life from flight MH17

continues to unfold,

we pray for those who have lost loved ones,

and who are uncertain of what the future now holds.

As discussions continue about access to the crash site,

may there be respect for the life lost.

Uphold those who are seeking Your kingdom

in the midst of their anguish,

that they may find comfort.

Salve the angry voices of nations

to allow for sensitive discussion

that ensures respect for all life.

 

Lord, Your will be done,

YOUR KINGDOM COME IN US.

 

Remembering times, places, and people

in whom we have discovered something of the treasure

of the kingdom of heaven,

we praise You, loving Lord

for the richness of the faith we have met in others.

 

Lord, Your will be done,

YOUR KINGDOM COME IN US.

 

Amen.