Congregational Prayers

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Most Holy Father,

We come this morning to give You thanks and to make our petition known before You. You are a God of order and structure and we pray specifically this morning for those institutions afforded us that serve to provide structure and authority to our lives and to our community, the Church and the state.

We pray for our national, state and local leaders, for those men and women, who though elected to power, nevertheless derive their power and authority from Your hand through Your divine decree. You have given them to us that we might have an ordered and regulated society, where the worst of the evils of the Fall are curtailed and business and public interaction, and more importantly, worship, can take place in peace and safety. Protect and aid these people in the exercise of their duties. Bless those that serve well, for in serving their constituents, the are consequently serving You. Be with our President, our Congress, our Governor and state and local officials; be especially with those who bear the sword for our sake, our police and soldiers, that they would exercise their authority with humility and fear of God, and that they would be successful in restraining crime and aggression, helping shelter our people from the ravages of sin.

We pray for that other great authority You have given us, the Church, that eternal and precious authority for which our hearts long and our souls aspire. Grant Your blessings, Lord, on the men You have given Her to lead, direct, encourage and feed Her; men raised to their roles not through self-will or public sentiment, but called irresistibly by the Holy Spirit and confirmed by their own conscience and the recognition of the Church. How difficult and demanding a responsibility falls on these men! Come along side them and strengthen and encourage them. Give them grace for the tasks at hand, with wisdom and discernment and love for Christ and His flock.

We pray also for our congregants, for the Body of the Church, in all its flawed beauty. Be with our brothers and sisters and draw us ever more closely unto Yourself. Be our God and take us as Your people. Wash us in the Word and feed us on the sacraments. Enlighten our hearts through the Holy Spirit and forgive us our sin, conforming us to the image of Christ, that on that great Day of the Lord we may stand before You no longer a flawed beauty, but a radiant, immaculate and glorious entity, a testimony for eternity of Your mercy, faithfulness and love. We pray this morning for our own consistory and council, for our brothers in the URC, and especially for our church planning efforts in Kaua’i, and those families there. We pray for the specific needs of our local body.

Blessed Lord, You are God and King and all authority in Heaven and Earth derives itself from You. Thank you for Your blessings unto us in the Church and in the State. You have loved us dearly in each. We pray that all such authority will submit itself unto You as is fitting and proper and holy and good. We pray this in the Name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, Who was subordinate to none, yet humbled Himself to God in all obedience and submission.

AMEN