For our worship
Lord of story and song, dance and declaration, sacrifice and sacrament, prayer and praise: gather us in worship. Stir in us the desire to humble ourselves and exalt you. Deliver us from being irritable and opinionated to the point that we miss the main point of worship: that we each pour out our hearts, minds, and strength in grand gestures of love for you. Make us participants and not spectators. Quicken each worship leader with charisma and joy. Help us bring joy to you in our worship, and replenish our faith, and send us forth to do good in the world. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
For our children and youth
O Ancient Giver of Life, who heard the cries of the barren Elizabeth and knew the agony of the childless Sarah: look with pity upon your people who gather too often in settings where insufficient numbers of children leave us languid. Bring young life to our aging fellowship. And teach us right ways to welcome and nurture each child and youth who enters our doors. Deepen our resolve to share the stories and songs of our faith with our children. Help us inspire them toward discipleship by our own examples and testimony. And guide and protect our youth and keep them close to you as they navigate temptations and boredoms and doubts. Redouble our love for them when they challenge us. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen
For the old
O God, who art older than Methuselah, before whom no one outgrows humility or hope: grant us wisdom and grace as we age. Show us your purpose for keeping us in this world. Equip us to serve you even in old age. Pour your spirit upon all our programs which serve those who are aging. Help us increase the fruitfulness of those who are retired through our work in retirement centers, through our life reviews, and through our seminars. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
O Lord, who has taught us to forgive one another repeatedly: act swiftly to mend all breaks and wounds in your church. Calm those emotions which keep quarrels alive. Help us to set aside the score of wrongs done. Plant seeds of reconciliation. Chase away all our malice and rudeness. Bless the peacemakers. Help us to see Christ in each other—and be Christ to one another, even when we have cause to resist such grace. Let our church be whole and in its wholeness witness to your power and joy. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
For a role in transforming the world
Holy One, who heard the cries of Hebrew slaves and saw their misery: we know that in our world today, there are still cries which ascend to your ears, and there are still miseries abundant in the human race. Come quickly to deliver us all from evils which abound and protect those who are weakest and most vulnerable in our times. May the next dawn find us beating our swords into plowshares, serving bread to the hungry, and loosing the chains which restrain our human potential. As your kingdom comes and your will is established on earth, let our church be an instrument of your work. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.