I'm discovering that it's hard to jump from a 12 hour car ride back into sermon prep. The trip home was uneventful for us, but events were happening all around us. One car was flipped upside down (on the other side of the road), we later passed a small accident in which gas was still leaking from the tank--you could see the gas because it was on fire. Also, about nine hours into the trip I was numb and passing a semi when out of nowhere (was I just not paying attention?) a state trooper was wailing away at my bumper. I floored the mini-van (it responded like a teenager who has just been told to clean his room) and got around the semi, but the car the trooper was wanting to pull over had slowed down in front of the semi so I slid in behind THAT car while the trooper pulled up next to him, causing him to slow further ... you get the idea.
Tomorrow we have the Galilee Ringers with us in both worship services and at 2pm in a concert. I hope you can make it. Happy June!
Prayers of the Church for Grandview
1 June 2008
1 June 2008
God of everything that is, seen or unseen, far beyond knowing all things, you assembled miniscule details into beautiful, life-giving, realities. Who among us can follow the path of a single drop of rain? Does this drop sink into the ground beneath us? Does it return almost immediately to the sky above us? Does it become a part of a plant that will nourish us within from within? The elaborate paths of each drop are more than we can know, and yet you still give us the simple pleasure of receiving and offering a cold cup of water in your name.
You, O God, are absolutely brilliant, yet even as we say that we know that the words are too limited to convey what we wish to convey. And so we gather before you and praise you with full hearts, with delight on our lips, with our eyes open to you. Look favorably upon this gathering of people who are the work of your hands.
Thank you for breath and being, for people who love us and for people to love. Thank you for those who make music and for those who love to hear it. Thank you for the simple pleasures of cooking and for the ability to share that meal with others.
Thank you for the calling you have place upon people of different gifts, for giving some the intelligence required to build or fix things, for giving others the intelligence required to teach, or parent, or heal, or nurture, or organize, or grow food, and all of the various vocations that help to give us life as a community.
Forgive us, O God, when we fail to consider how the gifts you have given us are meant to serve the greater good. Forgive us when our gifts become nothing more than a way to get by. Forgive us when decide that our choices—moral, ethical, financial—are also nothing more than a way to get by in this life. Forgive us that short-sighted view of reality. Open our eyes this morning to the big picture of grace, love, justice, and abundant life; not just for each of us, but for those around us.
If it pleases you, show us in the silence where we have focused on ourselves instead of on your kingdom:
We break the silence with petition for those on our prayer list. Some of them have been there for a very long time. In your mercy, O God, grant healing, protection, safe homecoming, joy, strength, and wholeness to those who remain in need. Be with those of us who are not on the list that we will be a source of support to those who need support. We also ask that we would all have a relationship with you that is so deep, so strong, that it will sustain us in our darkest hours.
Give us a strong enough relationship with you that we might know how to offer peace to our enemies, to forgive those who wrong us, to love our neighbor, our enemies, and even our selves for your sake.
We pray as your Son has taught us: