Congregational Prayers

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Holy Father,

In the daily unfolding of our lives You present us with seemingly endless decisions and choices that we are to navigate. Our Christian lives are roads upon which at every step we find You have placed a new turn, a different side-road. Many of the paths seem inconsequential, and very well may be, but many have long-lasting consequences for ourselves, our families and our Church. We must chose wisely, for our decisions will often glorify Christ or shame Him. How overwhelming the task before us! How ill-equipped we feel to handle it. Yet we know from Your Word You have not left us without guidance; we know from Your Word what You, the Lord, require of us. And Christ Himself assured us that when we took up the path that our burden, which looks so cumbersome and weighty, was indeed light in His strength. And so we pray this morning for Your mercy and grace in the decisions of our lives. We pray for the wisdom and leading of the Holy Spirit, for a hunger for Your Word that we might know Your will, and most of all, we pray for the Gospel of Grace to be poured out on our lives for each false step and backtrack. As Your Son taught us to pray: May Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for Thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory.

We pray for our nation and the elections approaching. We pray that You would use this democratic process for Your glory, that the men and women of our country would choose kings after Your own heart and not those Sauls who appeal to our more worldly sensibilities. Give us wisdom and discernment that we would please You and secure Your blessings on our land and people. We pray for our President, Congress and Justices, for our state and local governments and all whom You have put in authority over us. Direct their hearts and minds as men might direct a river, that their thoughts and intents would bend to Your desires and Your wishes, so that they might govern according to Your will and precepts.

We pray for Your Church, that she would not wander or stray, but that she would fix herself on the path of Jesus Christ crucified, and would preach Him faithfully and constantly. Correct her when she missteps, and give her speed and effectivity on the roads You have chosen for her. Give her a love for Your word, for Your people, and a desire to see souls saved and men restored to God. Protect and nourish her and fit her for the tasks You have planned for her. We pray for our own local congregation, for our pastor, elders and deacons, for all the families of our congregation. Revive in us a hunger for Your Word, a passion to live for Christ’s glory, and a longing to journey with one another in Christian fellowship. Protect us from the sin that assails us and make our roads straight and clear. Help us to faithfully catechize our children and sensitize us to the needs of our brothers and sisters around us, that we might serve them in love and humility. We pray for the specific needs of our own local body.

We pray all these things in the Name of the Way, the Truth, and the Life, Jesus Christ.

AMEN