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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Today's Prayer

Gracious God,
we await the end of the world.
We have always prayed that you would “quickly come!”
What we await is not the destruction 
of your beautiful planet
and not the annihilation 
of your precious and beloved children,
but the fulfillment of our world’s true purpose
revealed in Jesus Christ.  
It is he,
and the shining, glorious, 
eternal, invincible love which he embodies,
who is the end — 
the goal, destiny, purpose, and meaning — 
of our world, and of our lives.
He is the One we are waiting for.

Help us, by the power of your Spirit,
to wait with wisdom,
keeping our lamps ready,
immersed in the good work you call on us to do.

As a church 
let us live in the light of your promised coming,
serving others, 
doing justice, 
cherishing creation, 
gathering together, 
forming communities of peace and acceptance, 
forgiveness and delight, 
where every individual is heard and encouraged, 
loved and respected.

Let us separate ourselves 
from the reign of death and violence.
Let competition and envy,
greed and gluttony.
The need to be first and have more,
gain no traction among us.
But let us walk simply and gently
upon the Earth,
as Jesus did.
Leaving no wake or footprint
except love, joy, and peace.

We pray that your peace 
may extend through us
into our world.  
We pray especially for those
whose lives were disrupted
by the terror attacks in Mumbai last week.
Our hearts go out to families and friends
of those who died.
We pray for those enduring terrible violence and warfare
in the Congo, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Help us to follow the One 
who comes as the Prince of Peace, 
responding to violence with love and forgiveness, witnessing to the power of your cross to save.

We pray, O God, for those who suffer among us
pain of body, soul, or spirit.  We especially lift up....
Restore them to wholeness, O God,
by the power of your Spirit.
Let your light shine upon and within them
knitting back together what is broken,
restoring what is lost,
banishing what is evil.

We thank you for the life of....
And for all in her/him that is good, and kind, and holy.

Help, save, comfort, and defend us, gracious Lord,
in the communion 
of all who have gone before us in the faith 
and all who will come after, 
we commend ourselves, one another, 
and our whole life to you, 
O Christ our God, 
and to you we render glory, 
now and forever.  

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