May 15, 2017 · 11:03 am
We gather today as a congregation to honor the source of our being–
the One in Whom we live and move and have our existence.
And while we celebrate motherhood in its various forms, we remember that the church (as Your body) is our mother too: a womb of contemplation and action.
She is a mother who teaches, rebukes, corrects and trains us in righteousness.
From her we learn to speak the truth in love.
And part of speaking the truth in love is the sharing of our joys and concerns with one another, as we lift them up to you.
Hear the prayers of your children!
[prayer cards are read aloud]
And we know that it takes courage to write these prayers–to even put them on paper–knowing a whole host will hear them.
And sometimes we lack courage.
Sometimes our prayers are too hidden or to painful to be spoken aloud.
Sometimes our joys are inexpressible, and can only be pondered in our hearts.
And we remain silent.
And sometimes we feel abandoned by You.
But the prophet Isaiah reminds us of Your presence.
He asks “Has God forgotten us?” and answers the question with incredulity:
“Can a nursing mother forget her child?”
We trust you to hear us in our silence!
[pause for a few moments of silent prayer]
Lord, hear our prayers!
And remind us that new every morning is Your love,
Oh great God of Light
And all day long, you are working for good in this world.
Stir up in us the desire to serve
To live peaceable
To devote our days to walking in the living traditions of Jesus
who welcomed the disenfranchised
cared for the sick
was generous with the poor
and loved the unlovable.
Filed under Mothers Day
Tagged as Ecclesiology
October 19, 2014 · 1:08 pm
We are an independent lot, Lord.
We each have our own opinions
and our own ideas
of how the world should work–
of how each other should be.
We seek our own light
and our own truth.
Everything can be customized
and tailored to suit.
Even our spirituality.
But in spite of all that,
and against our better judgement,
we gather together as one body
these Sunday mornings.
This ‘gathering’ is an act of cultural defiance–
a protest against rampant individuality
We gather collectively as an act of trust
that your presence is in, around, and among us.
We hold to the promise of your faithfulness and love
that when two or three are gathered, you will dwell among us.
And so gathering together like this displaces our egos
and opens our hearts and minds
to the Spirit’s leading
As our individual prayers are read aloud before the congregation
they are transformed into the collective prayer
and hope of us all.
So we ask you to hear the prayers of this gathering.
[read aloud the prayer cards]
And we acknowledge those intimate thoughts,
concerns and hopes that feel
too tender of fragile to speak aloud.
We trust those to your presence too.
[pause for silent prayer]
Hear our silent prayers!
Bind us together
as a collective
and move our hears and minds
towards a good that is greater than our individual egos.
Open us to your leadership–
to learn a new way.
Inspire us by your faithfulness and love
and renew our hearts
for the love of our neighbors
and this world.
January 26, 2014 · 10:26 pm
We gather today with the business of “church” in mind.
Our thoughts are filled
with schedules and policies,
Open our hearts and minds
to the movement of your Spirit
so that we never lose site
of the fact that being your church
is our work
and in all our tasks,
the Holy is present.
Teach us to honor the Holy in one another.
And teach us to share in each other’s burdens and joy.
[read aloud the prayers of the congregation]
And help us hear the silences and see the gaps
acknowledging those burdens so heavy
that words alone cannot bear them,
and those delights so sweet
we are left speechless.
[pause for silent prayer]
Teach us how to best love one another.
And remind us that being a congregation together
is a commitment that is renewed in our daily work–
in the most mundane of chores.
We are together to do good in the world.
Stir up in us a desire to serve
and to live peaceably,
devoting our ways to walking in the living traditions of Jesus
to welcome the excluded
to side with the weak
to care for the vulnerable.