Pastoral Prayer 7.10.05

O Lord,
We cannot hide from your presence
Your reach is far and your grasp is gentle
You are felt deep within the earth
As all of creation groans from the weight of your hands
We can see the marks of your beauty in the landscapes of our lives

O Gracious Host
You stretch your vast arms wide and encompass a universe of seen and unseen things
And yet these same arms welcome home strangers and aliens, widows and orphans, the poor and oppressed
Behind every eye your goodness and mercy dwell,
Behind every heart your compassion and hope reside,

And yet we choose to ignore this out of fear
We are loathe to recognize that you came in peace,
rebelling against the ways this world taught us to live.
We choose to walk our own paths, listening and looking up to those with power and wealth

Where you have blessed the meek,
We have worshipped the wealthy;
Where you have blessed the merciful,
We have screamed an “eye for an eye;”
Where you have blessed the poor in spirit,
We have lifted up the self-righteous and elite

O Merciful Lord,
forgive our blindness
for your kingdom to find its way in this world
we must turn and find you
we must write your words on our hearts
and see your wisdom in the foolishness of the cross.

The road is narrow and the path unsure,
So few have chosen to tread where angels tread
So few have walked this trail that we fear being lost, being alone.
And yet, by taking the first step we know that we will never be alone again.

For those whose lostness seems unreachable
For those who find themselves to ill to take the first step,
For those who live in places where we would dare not go,
For those whose lives are lived far from the comforts of home
We pray that the gentle rain of your love and mercy might fall upon their faces
And grant them peace and strength.

For we ask these things in the name of the one who came and lived among us,
the one who cleared the path so that we might live again
the one who taught us to pray saying…



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