Prayers for the 4th Sunday after the Epiphany (January 31-February 5, 2021)

Watchword for the Week:
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. Psalm 111:10

Come, let us worship and lift our hearts high and adore our God, our Creator.
For you indeed are God, and we are your people, crafted by the skill of your hands.

Psalm 111:1-10

1 Praise the Lord!
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart, in the company of the upright, in the congregation. 
2 Great are the works of the Lord,
studied by all who delight in them.
3 Full of honor and majesty is his work,
and his righteousness endures forever.
4 He has gained renown by his wonderful deeds;
the Lord is gracious and merciful.
5 He provides food for those who fear him;
he is ever mindful of his covenant. 
6 He has shown his people the power of his works,
in giving them the heritage of the nations.
7 The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy. 
8 They are established forever and ever,
to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
9 He sent redemption to his people; he has commanded his covenant forever.
Holy and awesome is his name.
10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever.

Confession of Sin

When we cease to acknowledge God’s presence in our lives, we lose the ability to make wise choices with them, and so it is that we sin. Let us confess those short-comings.

Gracious God, we are thankful that your love is steadfast towards us. Your love is unwavering, unconditional, and given freely and abundantly. We acknowledge that our love for you has wavered and become lukewarm. We confess that at times we have been unfaithful servants seeking worldly acceptance, self-gratification, and material gain. We often deceive ourselves into thinking that we can live without you and act in ways that prove that we think your eyes are turned and your ears are closed to us.   Lead us into lives worthy of our calling in Christ, with humility and patience, bearing one another in love, and eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. We pray for this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

My friends, God is faithful and just. God seeks only to forgive your sins and will not remember them. Rejoice, be glad, and give God praise.

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 a copy of the Daily Texts, you will find today’s texts posted in the margin on your page’s right side (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 a 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,
who 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.)

Triune God, knowing your will for us sends us to bring good news to the oppressed,
and to bind the wounds of those broken in heart,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of prisons to those who are bound,
to announce the year of your grace,
to comfort all who mourn,
to give them a garland of consolation,
instead of the ashes of mourning,
the oil of gladness and healing,
and the rolling tears that wash away sorrow.
Lord of the dance, in whom we live and move and exult for joy, guide our steps through the complexity of our lives.
Keep us mindful of your steadfast love for us and ways in which we can make that love come alive in the hearts of those that we love, serve and come in contact with this very day. AMEN.