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, July 17, 2017

Pastoral Prayer (July 16) Athens First UMC

[Our church was blessed to have the Dalton family in worship on Sunday. They moved to New England two years ago and are back visiting. Matthew served on our Leadership Board and Laura was our Director of Communications. They enjoyed seeing our newly remodeled church facility.]

O God, thank you for giving us those special moments in life where there is so much celebration and joy…like a 65th wedding anniversary, the birth of a child, a retirement celebration, a college acceptance letter, an unexpected financial gift, good news from the doctor.

O God, thank you for all of these times of celebration and happiness. And we also thank you for the many other moments of our lives that might seem ordinary, but are nevertheless, holy moments…like that first cup of coffee, planting flowers, mowing the yard, paying a bill, buying groceries, walking the dog, writing a sermon, donating diapers and baby wipes, preparing a meal.

Living God, you are just as present in these ordinary events as you are in the more extraordinary moments of our lives, if only we take the time to notice. And so remind us during this long season of Ordinary Time, to take time to pray often and to be reminded of the purpose you have given to each and every one of us, to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of our community and world. Help us to see our daily tasks in light of this greater purpose that you have entrusted to us.

Even now, we lift up to you all of the prayer concerns that are on our hearts this morning.

Together, we pray for friends and family, for our community, for our mayor, for our law enforcement personnel, for doctors and nurses, for our hospital, for the university and its new president, Dr. Duane Nellis, for all the churches and pastors in our surrounding area, for organizations like Habitat for Humanity, Good Works Outreach, Hospice, and our own Monday Lunch as they serve the needs of our community, for a safe Brew Week here in Athens, and for so many other prayers requests that we silently lift up to you, knowing that you hear our prayers.

(Moments of Silence)

And now, we join together, in praying the words you taught your disciples to pray, and now teach us to pray…

“Our Father, who art in heaven…”

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