Sunday Prayers 13/5

Sunday Prayers 13/5

“How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!  Matthew 23:37

This drawing was a gift to Janet Watson Kruse from one of her sons.

Prayer of Adoration

As we come to pray, let’s cradle our hearts in peace
as we hear the beautiful meditation of Psalm 131
– two brief verses of beauty and peace.

Psalm 131
O Lord, my heart is not lifted up,
my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul, l
ike a child upon its mother’s breast;
my soul is like the weaned child with its mother.

Let us pray, singing the refrain from this Psalm:
Like a Child rests in its mother’s arms

Like a child rests in its mother’s arms
so will I rest in you.

Holy One, Mother of Creation,
you birth beauty, harmony, peace and plenty.
We worship and adore you.

Like a child rests in its mother’s arms
so will I rest in you.

Sophia Christ,
you spread your wings to gather all
into the family of your love.
We worship and adore you.

Like a child rests in its mother’s arms
so will I rest in you.

Gracious Spirit,
you bring unity where there is division,
peace among the diverse children of God.
We worship and adore you.

Like a child rests in its mother’s arms
so will I rest in you.

Prayer of Confession

Listen now to the prophet Hosea speaking of God’s relationship with Israel, the people of God. Hear this poignant prophecy as an address to us, for by our new birth through baptism into the resurrection of Christ we too are among God’s chosen people. God speaks as the loving and heartbroken mother.

Hosea 11:1-4
When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son.
The more I called them, the more they went from me;
they kept sacrificing to [other gods],
and offering incense to idols.
Yet it was I who taught [my people] to walk,
I took them up in my arms;
but they did not know that I healed them.
I led them with cords of human kindness,
with bands of love.
I was to them like those who lift infants to their cheeks.
I bent down to them and fed them.

O God, like a mother, you love and care for us,
and you hurt with the pain of a mother
when her children reject her.
We bring before you the vulnerability
and frailty of our own loving.
When we have hurt and rejected others, forgive us.
When we have contributed, even through simple inaction,
to the injustices of rejection in our world, forgive us.
When we have hurt and rejected you, forgive us.

Declaration of Grace

The wisdom of scripture guides us through the low places of hurt and broken relationship, and with forgiving grace leads us to reconciliation. Listen now to the prophet Isaiah. Here God welcomes the people back to their true home Jerusalem after years of exile. The exile in Babylon represents broken relationship with God, and the return to Jerusalem is its healing.

Isaiah 66:7-13
Before she was in labour she gave birth
before her pain came upon her she delivered a child…
Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her,
all you who love her;
rejoice with her in joy, all you who mourn over her—
that you may nurse and be satisfied
from her consoling breast;
that you may drink deeply
with delight from her glorious bosom.
For thus says our God:
I will extend prosperity to her like a river,
and the wealth of the nations
like an overflowing stream;
and you shall nurse and be carried on her arm,
and dandled on her knees.
As a mother comforts her child,
so I will comfort you;
you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.

Comfort, O comfort my people, says our God.
Hear the word of comfort that flows
to us all from the heart of love
on the voice of Wisdom, by the breath of the Spirit:
Your sin is forgiven:
Thanks be to God

Ian Ferguson, offered for worship, Easter 6B, 13/5/18
Bible readings offered by Jenne Perlstein

Prayers of the People

Today’s prayers for others are taking their cue from the reading from Proverbs and the issue of divine Wisdom crying out to the world she had made.  Each section of the prayer is a prayer that we might not be deaf to the cries that go up from the world to this one who is Holy Wisdom.

Let us pray: Holy Wisdom, open our ears to the urgent cries of those whose own ears are filled with the sounds of violence and war.
Deliver us from indifference to their cries.
Raise up in their hearing voices that that will speak of love and peace.

Holy Wisdom, open our ears to the lonely cries of those bereft of love and companionship, whose ears are filled with the silence of loneliness and loss.
Deliver us from indifference to their cries.
Raise up in their hearing even whispers of friendship and community.

Holy Wisdom, open our ears to the cries of those fearful for what tomorrow might bring in their work or school or family.
Deliver us from indifference to their cries.
Raise up in their hearing people who will speak words of comfort and hope.

Holy Wisdom, open our ears to the cries of the fragile and spoiled earth, cries so easily drowned out by the noise of our greed and our technology.
Deliver us from indifference to its cries.
Raise up voices that echo your cry of delight in the foundations of the earth and which will speak strongly and wisely for your creation.

Holy Wisdom, open our ears to the cries of the church in this and other places,  a mixture of cries variously uncertain, fearful and courageous.
Deliver us, with all that we have in this community, from indifference to these cries of our brothers and sisters in the faith who have so much less.
Raise up prophets with the gift of proclaiming your love with humble conviction.

Holy Wisdom, open our ears to the cries or our neighbours in this church and in our various communities, cries that might struggle to be heard through the filters of the familiar and the routine.
Deliver us from not hearing those cries.
Open our ears in ways that the familiar and the routine do not make us deaf.

Holy Wisdom, hear all our cries for ourselves and each other – the cries that we dare not share and those that we can only stammer.
Help us to hear one another.

Unite us in hearing your words to us to uphold, encourage and strengthen.
To you who delights in the human race, and who offers us delight in life, we pray. Amen.

Geoff Thompson, offered for worship, Easter 6B, 13/5/18

By |2018-05-14T10:22:27+00:00May 14th, 2018|Categories: BUC Stories, Sunday Prayers|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

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