Prayers of the People July 31, 2022

The Reverend Dr. Katie Snipes Lancaster

Spirit of the living God,
Holy mystery known and beyond knowing,
we turn to you with clumsy affection,
our human longings at the forefront of prayer.
We bring you all the burdens of our lives:
our worries, our hopes, our dreams,
our loved ones who bring us joy,
those for whom life has become suddenly unpredictable,
those for whom pain has become shadow,
those who cannot untangle the mess they are in,
those whose ego or greed has overcome,
those of us who grieve,
those of us who long for another way,
those of us will never let go of the love we knew.
Hold our worries, our hopes, our dreams.
Hold our loved ones.
Hold our deepest prayers O God.

We ask this because we trust you,
and we trust you because every time we
open ourselves to you,
a riverbed of love flows within,
and our bodies surge with your presence.

Baptize us again in your Holy Spirit,
the slow rush of your affection sculpting our very lives.

The very ground beneath our feet becomes holy,
and the wide reach of sky above sacred,
when we turn to you.

On blue sky days like this
when we see another vee of geese take flight,
a flock of sparrows bounce from branch to branch,
a seagull or hawk soar with intention across the sky,
our fragile hope for this aching planet is rekindled.

We long for hope even as we recognize that midnight rain,
for some is balm, and for others flood.

This age of wildfire, heatwave,
and drought changes lives forever.

Be with those flooded in Kentucky,
and with climate refugees across the globe
who walk in search of stability, safety, and a sense of home.

May the James Webb images of galaxies
farther than our imaginations could fathom
reignite our love for this planet.

Whether in our own backyard
or thousands of unthinkable miles from here
divided by culture, war and mother tongue,
foster in us the energy for peaceful change.

Write your love on our hearts,
and give us creativity and imagination to be
who you call us to be in this divided world.

Let your spirit descend across our country
wedged further apart by social and political conflict;
and help us to find a way through,
a way toward the vision of community
and thriving that you place within us.

Be with us O God, O Christ, O Spirit,
and hear us as we pray the prayer Jesus teaches us saying…Our Father….

July 31, 2022

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