Monthly Archives: February 2017

Prayers of the People for February 19, 2017 (Epiphany 6)

We are invited to bring our world and our lives to God in prayer, believing that we will not only be heard, but strengthened for ministry.  Trusting this promise, let us pray.

[Short pause]

Liberating God, we give thanks for story tellers, who tell us again who we are, who gently show us our inconsistencies, and who remind us of who we can be.  God who shines in darkness,
Fill us with your light.

Liberating God, the stories you tell us about ourselves set us free from expectations, and enable us to respond with eagerness and joy.  Help us listen; help us respond.  God who shines in darkness,
Fill us with your light.

Liberating God, so many stories in our world do not liberate, do not set free.  Use us to share your story in our hurting communities and broken relationships.  God who shines in darkness,
Fill us with your light.

Liberating God, you come to us especially when our stories are about pain and illness, about war and hunger, about poverty and injustice.  Open us to your presence, and come though us to those who need to hear, especially [NAMES, AND] those we name before you.
[Long pause]
God who shines in darkness,
Fill us with your light.

Liberating God, we pray for this congregation, this parish, this Ministry Area, this Synod, this Church.  We thank you for what we have been.  But we ask even more that you would give us your vision of what we can be, and that you show us the steps we need to take.  God who shines in darkness,
Fill us with your light.

We offer all these prayers, as well as the unspoken longings of our hearts, to you, liberating God, in the name of Jesus, your liberating Saviour.
Amen.

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Ready or not….

I think God is playing Hide and Seek with us.

I really do.

And I’m thinking that God is the one who is hiding.

But I’m becoming more and more convinced that God is not hiding in the church’s choir stalls, or fellowship halls, or Sunday school rooms, or even in our sanctuaries.

Nor is God hiding in our committees, or our fellowship events, or our fundraisers, or our Bible studies and prayer groups.

And yes, I’ll say it: God is not even hiding in our worship or our prayers, our sermons or our singing, our confession or our communion, our altar calls or our devotions.

I think God is hiding outside.

Outside in plain sight.

On the street corners, in the coffee shops, in the neighbourhoods and factories, in the schools and town halls.

In jails and hospitals, in band stands and town squares, in overloaded refugee boats and food banks and pawn shops.

God is hiding in tattoo parlours and crack dens, in unemployments lines and politician’s  offices, in libraries and liquor stores, in restaurants and restrooms.

If we do not start there, outside, where God is truly hiding, we will never really see God in our churches, or our Mosques, or our Temples, or our sacred glades.

And certainly not in the person gazing at us in the mirror.

If we are not aware of God hiding in the people and interactions around us, if we don’t look for God OUT THERE…,

then all the divine revelations and ecstatic experiences and theological understandings and meditative discernments and inspired insights in the world will add up to absolutely nothing.

I think the best thing we can do is finally stop counting, finally open our eyes, and finally call out, “Ready or not, here I come.”

And start looking.