Category Archives: Sabbath

August 31, 2014– Labor Day

Gracious God,

You’ve given us this sabbath
as a break from our work,
and as such, you grant dignity
both to our labor and our rest.

Help us to learn from your example
to value those under our employ–
both their labor and their rest.
To uphold their dignity
through just practices in the workplace,
and through fair compensation.

Help us to be mindful of each other’s needs
and to recognize that
the needs of one are the needs of all.

Hear us as we lift up the needs of this congregation:

[read aloud the prayer cards]

And hear us in our silence
as we uphold those things only pondered in our hearts.

[pause for silent prayer]

Remind us that justice is a commitment renewed daily.
All day long it works for good in the world.
It stirs up in us a desire to serve
and a desire for blessed peace and rest.

Help us to devote our ways
to the living traditions of Jesus,
who welcomed the poor,
cared for the estranged,
and who sought justice
and practiced mercy.

Blessed Be.

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Filed under Justice, Labor Day, Public Theology, Sabbath

April 13, 2014–Palm Sunday and Baptisms

Gracious God,

Our gatherings each Sunday are like pit stops on our spiritual journeys.
Sundays together are a time to pause
to collect ourselves
to assess our direction
and re-set our navigation;
to rest
to find renewal.
Open our hearts so that we can drink in the refreshment of the Sabbath–
never mistaking these rest stops for the final destination.
Remind us that we are pilgrims on the way.
We have not arrived.
And that we never walk alone.

Teach us to bear the concerns and celebrate each other’s joys along the way.

Hear the prayers of this congregation:

[read aloud prayer cards]

We acknowledge that there are burdens so heavy
we cannot risk speaking them aloud or even writing them on a card.
And delights so sweet we can only treasure and ponder them quietly in our hearts.
We acknowledge these prayers:

[pause for silent prayer]

Hear our silent prayers as well!

And on our journey together,
remind us that love is a commitment renewed daily.
It works for good in the world.
It stirs up in us a desire to serve
and to live peaceably with our neighbors.

It helps us devote our ways to walking and journeying in the living traditions of Jesus
to care for the poor and most vulnerable
and to welcome the excluded.

Blessed Be.

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Filed under Palm Sunday, Sabbath

Chicago- September 22, 2013

After a particularly violent week in Chicago…

God of grace and peace,

We gather together today
as a people in need of understanding.
Violence rocks our city and we are at a loss–
-to know how to grieve
-to know how to comfort
-to know how and when to change
-to know when to intervene
-to know where justice lies
-to know how to be merciful.

Quiet us this Sabbath.
Open our hearts to one another,
our minds to learning,
our souls to peace
as we hear the prayers of this congregation.

[read aloud the prayer cards]

For Chicago, we pray for peace.
For our gangs, we pray for reconciliation.
For our police, we pray for safety and that they love justice and show mercy.

We acknowledge those prayers of delight
which are simply pondered in our hearts
and those expressions of pain
which never make it past groans into words.
Hear those prayers as well.

[pause for silent prayer]

Teach us to rest in one another this Sabbath.
Teach us how to best love one another.

Remind us that peace is a commitment that must be renewed daily.
All the day long this commitment works for good in the world.
Peace stirs up in us a desire to serve
to live in community
and to devote our ways to walking in the living traditions of Jesus
who welcomed the excluded
forgave the offender
bridged the gaps
and cared for the vulnerable.
Jesus demonstrated a different way of being in the world.

Teach us to live this Sabbath way.

Blessed be.

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Filed under Justice, Peace, Public Theology, Sabbath

On the discipline of “Sabbath”– September 8, 2013

Gracious God,

Our gatherings are a pause
–a respite from the vicissitudes of daily life.
Or at least they should be.

Calm our spirits and gently remind us
that there is no where else we need to be
no better thing we could be doing
no issue so pressing
that we cannot or should not take the time
to breathe in your love.

Teach us to bask in your Holy Sabbath
Even in the times of our greatest joys
and most worrisome concerns.

On this Sabbath we lift up in quiet commitment
the joys and concerns of this congregation:

[read the prayer cards]

And we acknowledge those joys so overwhelming and sweet
they cannot be spoken aloud
And those concerns which burden us so deeply we are at a loss for words.
Hear those prayers as well.

[pause for silent prayer]

Teach us to set aside time for renewal
so that we have the resources to live up to our commitments.
For we know that love is a commitment which must be renewed daily.
All the day long it is working for good in the world.
It stirs up in us a desire to serve
and to live peaceably.
And to devote our days to walking in the living traditions of Jesus
to care for the poor, and welcome the excluded.

In your quiet gentleness
teach us how to best love one another.

Blessed be!

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Filed under Peace, Sabbath