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Prayers of God’s People during COVID-19

Prayers of God’s People during COVID-19 written by Rev. Larry Doornbos

I

God who stills the waters and quiets the storm,
God who lets not a hair of our heads fall without your knowledge,
God who brings sight to the blind and words to quieted tongues,
God who created the earth and all that is in it,
God who teaches the foolish and strengthens the wise,
God who promises a coming day
when there will be no more mourning or crying or pain,
when death will pass away,
when all things will be made new:

Bring healing to our world, to our neighbors, and to us.
Bring wisdom so we may honor you and bring glory to you in these days of plague.
Bring strength so we may rejoice in your love.
Bring patience that is grounded in actively living in your ways.
Bring hope that is rooted in your good news of shalom.
Bring grace and calm to us so we may bring grace and calm to others.

Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

II

Jesus, who saw the people like sheep without a shepherd
and with compassion began to teach them:
We your sheep need your teaching.
A cacophony of voices around us cry out
“Peace, peace!”
while other voices cry “There is no peace!”
“Listen to our voice!”
while others voices cry out, “No, listen to ours!”
“We are the wise!”
while others voices cry out, “No, they are fools!”
“Support this leader!”
while other voices cry out, “No, support this leader!”
“Hurrah for our side!”
while others voices cry out, “No, hurrah for our side!”

Jesus, shepherd of your sheep, have compassion on us as you did so long ago.
Teach us to know wisdom and to live with prudence,
to live as the sheep on your right hand, not the goats on your left,
to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly,
to use our gifts for the common good,
to hear truth and discern lies,
to seek first the kingdom of God and its righteousness,
to live with gladness because the Lord reigns.

Jesus, a cacophony of voices cries out around us.
As the voices cry out, we join a single voice,
the voice of a child named Samuel, and say,
“Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.”

III

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
the psalmist declares,
“I was glad when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord!’”

Today our hearts long to join with your people,
to share our burdens,
to see friends,
to care for the lonely,
to join our voices in praise,
to remember together this weekly reminder of your resurrection,
to hear together the amazing echoes of your Word proclaimed,
to touch the bread and taste the cup, looking at faces gathered around the table,
to be sent on mission into every sphere of human endeavor.

Today the longing of our hearts cannot be filled.
We lament our separation one from another.
We lament that we can’t join our voices in one place to bring glory to you.
We lament our lack of love of worship in the past.
We lament for sisters and brothers who are sick.
We lament a broken world that carries viruses.
We lament for those for whom this virus means dire social isolation.

We cry out to you, redeemer of all things,
for our leaders, who bear a deep burden for your people,
for our leaders, who are struggling and striving to build community in this time of pandemic,
for grace and healing and hope, first for those deeply struggling, and then for us all,
for you to reconcile all things to yourself through the blood of Jesus Christ,
for the day to come soon when we can have our hopes fulfilled
and join together with the community of faith
in the glad weekly remembrance of the resurrection of Jesus.

We pray this through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Please feel free to use these prayers for your Sunday online services and shelter-at-home prayer time.

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