Prayers for the 7th Week after Pentecost (July 19-29, 2020)

The Watchword for the week:
Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel, and his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts: I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god. Isaiah 44:6

This is the day that the Lord has made,
Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
We offer thanks to God for creating us, redeeming us, and sustaining us in our daily lives.
We offer thanks to God for being our beginning, our destination, and an ever-present companion on the path that we travel.

Psalm 86:11-17
11 Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart to revere your name.
12 I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart,
and I will glorify your name forever.
13 For great is your steadfast love toward me;
you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.
14 O God, the insolent rise up against me;
a band of ruffians seeks my life, and they do not set you before them.
15 But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
16 Turn to me and be gracious to me;
give your strength to your servant; save the child of your serving girl.
17 Show me a sign of your favor, so that those who hate me may see it and be put to shame,
because you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.

Knowing that God is ready to hear us, let us confess our sins:

Merciful God, we confess that we have sinned in many ways, times, and places. We have too often forgotten your place in our lives. We have allowed the clamoring distractions of our world to claim our hearts, our lives, and our money. We spend far too much time wrapped up with things that promise us only short-term entertainment, rather than a lifetime of meaning. We often labor so that we might be able to buy more rather than serve you.   We confess that we find it hard to live simply so that we can simply focus on you, who should be the first and last priority in our lives. Empower us to toss out the many gods that call for our time, money, and attention.

Hear and know that the Lord is good. God forgives those who are contrite in heart. Live in peace for God’s steadfast love endures forever. Give praise to God!
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Take time to read today’s Daily Texts.  Remember that God speaks to us through the inspiration of scripture, so approach the opportunity to read the texts as a privilege, eagerly anticipating what might be spoken to you today. How might today’s Word make a part of your life new again? If you do not have your own copy of the Daily Texts, you will find today’s texts posted in the margin on the right of your page (at the bottom of the page if you are on a mobile phone) When you have finished praying, continue as follows.

Let us confess our faith in the One who truly loves us:
I believe in the one true God, the Father of humanity,
who creates and sustains the universe in wisdom and power,
who calls us into being and into relationship with God by grace, whose nature is love.
I believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God,
who lived that we might see God,
who died that we might be reconciled to God,
who rose that we might experience the life of God,
ho freely accepts and welcomes all who come to him, not on the basis of their merit, but on the basis of his unconditional love.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
who is God present with us now,
who shows us our need for God,
who assures us of God’s love in all circumstances
who lives the life and love of Jesus Christ through us.
In this faith, I will seek to live in harmony with God, with people everywhere, and with all of creation. Amen.

(From the Moravian Book of Worship, the Liturgy for Creation, page 29. Used by permission from the Moravian Interprovincial Board of Communication.)

On this day may we seek to lay aside those things which keep us from seeing God present with us in our lives.
Through the hours of this day may we, O God, fix our eyes only on you.
Keep us from being distracted by the self-centeredness of our culture.
Help us to use the hours of this day and the gifts with which you have blessed us to serve others in your name.
Give us hearts of compassion and reconciliation by which we can bring others to know of your love.
May the words that we speak, the thoughts of our hearts, and the actions of our lives be pleasing to you, O Lord.
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord. Amen.