A United Methodist Pastor's Theological Reflections

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (nikos) through our Lord Jesus Christ." - I Corinthians 15:57

Monday, February 15, 2016

Pastoral Prayer (February 14) - Athens First UMC

[Our Boy Scout Troupe and congregation made a prayer cross for people to provide prayer concerns as they walk by our church building. This photo shows the scouts setting it in the ground after yesterday's worship service. Thank you, scouts!]

Dear God, thank you for long winded prayers, for flowery prayers, for prayers on the run, for Larry type prayers that are short and to the point, for prayers printed in church bulletins, for simple prayers, for complicated prayers, for ancient prayers, for modern prayers, and for this time of prayer as we gather on this first Sunday in Lent. Help us to grow in being a people of prayer.

We lift up to you those who feel like they don’t have a prayer. We pray for the praying types as well as for the non-praying types. We pray for the people of Athens and we pray for people who live in far and distant lands. We pray for our presidential candidates and we pray for people who feel like they have no voice. We pray for the long-term church member and we pray for the first time worship guest. We pray for friends and we pray for strangers. 

We especially pray for those who are going through a difficult time, those who are ill, those who are struggling financially, those who are anxious, those who are in grief, and those who have lost hope. May our prayers be of comfort to them today.

We pray for our new small groups who will begin meeting this week, for those serving on our Capital Campaign planning team, for our Boy Scout Troupe, and for the many groups in our community who use our facility throughout the week.

We offer all of these prayers to you, O God and other prayers that we name silently before you.  (Moments of Silence)

And now teach us to pray the prayer that Christ taught his disciples and now teaches us to pray together, saying…

“Our Father, who art in heaven…”

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