This year, I have encountered more people in the church who have lost their jobs or who will lose their jobs than in any other year in my ministry. This comes as no surprise since recent unemployment statistics in our region continue to be on the rise.
The unemployment rate in Ohio is 6.6%, the highest it has been since 1993. In contrast, the national unemployment rate is presently at 5.5% The Miami Valley area has been particularly hit hard because of several companies announcing job closings.
Every Saturday, the Jewish sabbath which reminds us to rest from our work, I pray the following prayer for those who are without employment. During this Labor Day Weekend, I invite all of us to make it a practice to pray this prayer every Saturday, keeping in mind the people in our community and church family who are unemployed and who are finding it very difficult to make ends meet.
Heavenly Father, we remember before you those who suffer want and anxiety from lack of work. Guide the people of this land so to use our public and private wealth that all may find suitable and fulfilling employment, and receive just payment for their labor; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
From "The Book of Common Prayer," Oxford University Press, New York, 1979