Prayers of the People for the Fourth Sunday of Advent, 2014

Trusting the coming of God’s reign, and believing that we are a part of it, we offer our prayers for the world, the church, and all in need.

[Short pause]

God who comes, open our eyes to your presence among us, and show us how to share what we see.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who speaks in the quiet and the small, open our ears to hear what you are saying through the poor, the outcast, the stranger.  Help us to listen for your voice.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who overthrows the powerful and raises up the powerless, fill our hearts with compassion for those who don’t count.  Give us the courage to join them in working for a more just world.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who calls us to serve, open us to face what happens in this world in the name of security, in the name of priviledge, in the name of control.  Fill us with the Spirit of your outrage at injustice, and send us out to live your life-giving priorities.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who restores, you come not to punish, but to heal.  Enable us to embrace those around us who need our care, who need our presence, who need our prayers, especially all those whom we name before you [INCLUDING NAMES].
[Long pause]
Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who comes, make us aware of your coming today.  Open us to the possibilities which your promise creates.   Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

We offer these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you, loving God, in the name of Jesus.
Amen.

Prayers of the People for the Third Sunday of Advent, 2014

Trusting the coming of God’s reign, and believing that we are a part of it, we offer our prayers for the world, the church, and all in need.

[Short pause]

Hidden, revealing God, we long to hear you, yet we are afraid to find you.  Free us from our fear.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Hidden, revealing God, you come to us, yet all too often we do not recognize you.  Open our hearts to faith.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Hidden, revealing God, we wait for your coming, yet we frequently are looking for the wrong things in the wrong places.  Help us let go of our preconceptions.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Hidden, revealing God, our world needs what you have given us, yet we are reluctant to share.  Give us the gift of generosity.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Hidden, revealing God, you come in weakness, to embrace us in our weakness.  Enable us to trust your presence in our hospitals and long-term care facilities, in our broken homes and broken hearts, in our ghettos and refugee camps, and with all those for whom we pray [INCLUDING NAMES].
[Long pause]
Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Hidden, revealing God, you do come.  You are present.  You do embrace.  Open us to your love.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

We offer these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you, loving God, in the name of Jesus.
Amen.

Prayers of the People for the Second Sunday of Advent, 2014

Trusting the coming of God’s reign, and believing that we are a part of it, we offer our prayers for the world, the church, and all in need.

[Short pause]

Public, political God, you come not only in the quiet of our private thoughts; you come into the public realm, and call us to join you.  Help us to follow where you lead.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Public, political God, you speak to our world through the cries of the poor, the silence of the hungry, the screams of the angry.  Join our voices to the chorus, singing your new world into existence.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Public, political God, it is risky to stand up, to speak out, to be engaged in the struggle for justice.  We want to be safe; we want to be secure.  Free us from our hesitation, and give us courage.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Public, political God, we offer thanks for those who are already doing your justice work, in places like The Democratic Republic of Congo, Guatemala, Ferguson, New York, and Canada.  Show us how we can join them.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Public, political God, you come into our real lives.  Help us trust your presence in our illnesses, in our broken relationships, in our broken promises.  Send us as your healing hands to [NAMES, AS WELL AS] those we name before you.
[Long pause]
Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

Public, political God, we are your people in this public, political time, in this public, political place.  Strengthen our faith to live out this incredible gift.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

We offer these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you, loving God, in the name of Jesus.
Amen.

Prayers of the People for the First Sunday of Advent, November 30, 2014

Trusting the coming of God’s reign, and believing that we are a part of it, we offer our prayers for the world, the church, and all in need.

[Short pause]

God who comes, we are surrounded by signs of your presence, but we are too often distracted by our own pain and insecurity.  Open our eyes to look for your coming today.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who comes, you provide more than we realize, but too often we listen to other voices telling us we need more.  Open our hearts to receive what you are giving today.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who comes, you ask us to reflect your love, but too often we let fear dictate our actions.  Open our hands to share your blessings today.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who comes, you promise to go with us wherever we go: to work, to school, to the voting booth, to the hospital, to the funeral home.  Use us to show your care to those who need it, especially [NAMES, AND] those we name before you now.
[Long pause]
Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

God who comes, give us the faith to trust your promise, the eyes to see your coming today, the joy to share what we see happening around us, and the willingness to take part in what you are doing in our world.  Hear us, O God.
Come to us and save us.

We offer these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you, loving God, in the name of Jesus.
Amen.

Prayers of the People for the Reign of Christ Sunday, November 23, 2014

God has promised to hear us. Therefore we pray for the world God loves, the church God calls, and all people according to their needs.

[Short pause]

God of sheep, God of goats, we spend far too much time worrying about who is “in” and who is “out,” who is “right” and who is “wrong,” who is “with us” and who is “against us.” Free us from being judge over one another, so that we might become servants of all. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God of sheep, God of goats, we are afraid of failure, we are afraid of not measuring up, we are afraid of trying. Remind us that your love does not depend on our efforts; remind us that your acceptance does not depend on our success. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God of sheep, God of goats, you welcome us all, yet you also call us all. You embrace us all, yet you also invite us all. As we celebrate your loving presence with us, open us to the difference we can make in the lives of others. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God of sheep, God of goats, we pray for those who need our prayers: the sick, the shut in, the shut out, the excluded, and all who need our prayers, especially [NAMES, AND] all those whom we name before you.
[Long pause]
With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God of sheep, God of goats, show us the people and situations around us who need our love, who need our support, who need our care. Then, loving God, strengthen us to reach out. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

We offer all these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you loving God, in the name of Jesus the Christ.
Amen.

Prayers of the People for the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost, November 16, 2014

Trusting the promise that God will hear our prayers, we offer our concern for the world God loves, the Church God calls, and all people according to their needs.

[Short pause]

Generous God, you give us all we have.  May we take the risk of gratitude in all we do.  With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

Generous God, you provide all that we need, and more.  Enable us to trust your giving, so that we may become the risky givers you call us to be.  With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

Generous God, open our eyes to all that you risk with us.  Free us to take the same risk with the people and situations around us.  With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

Generous God, life is risky.  Death is risky.  Faith is risky.  Free us from fear, so we may take part in your risky ministry.  With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

Generous God, you take the risk of joining us in our illnesses, our broken relationships, our failures, our pain.  Help us take the risk of touching all who are in need, especially [NAMES, AND] all those we name before you.
[Long pause]
With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

Generous God, inspire us to take the risk of love.  With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

We offer these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you, loving God, in the name of Jesus.
Amen.

Prayers of the People for the 22nd Sunday after Pentecost, November 9, 2014

God has promised to hear us when we pray. Therefore we pray for the world God loves, the church God calls, and all people according to their needs.

[Short pause]

God who listens, we give thanks that you hear us when we call to you. Increase our trust in your promises. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God who commits, you are faithful to what you have promised. Open our eyes to see that you are doing what you have said you will do. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God who comes, you continue to approach us with love and acceptance, yet you also approach us with a challenge and a Call. Give us the faith to welcome you, whatever the cost. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God who cries for justice, we ask your comfort for those who are victims of war and violence. We ask your blessings on those who serve their countries. We ask your wisdom for those who lead governments. Remind us of our call to be peacemakers. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God who heals, you are present in the dark corners of life: prisons, hospitals, half-way houses, funeral homes. Enable those who need reminders of your presence that you are walking with them. We especially pray for [NAMES, as well as] those we name before you.
[Long pause]
Send us into the dark, that we may shine your light. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

God who loves, you call us to be your people, you invite us to reach out to others, you inspire us to go beyond the boundaries we have created. Remove our fear; inspire our confidence; help us to speak out. With all God’s people, we pray,
Hear us, loving God.

We offer these prayers, as well as the silent yearnings of our hearts, to you, loving God, in the name of Jesus.
Amen.