Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of August 9, 2023

Rev. Catherine Nance

We turn to you, O God of Wednesday, with our mid-week concerns. We know you are the Lord of all days! There are no mini gods over each day! But there is a particular bent to our posture of prayer at mid-week. We have forgotten the inspiration of Sunday, routine that we thought was so grounding has consumed us, and we feel we might not make it to the respite of the weekend.  

So, Lord of mid-week, thank you for meeting us here. Re-orient us to the hymn* we sang last Sunday, “Jesus shall reign where’er the sun does its successive journeys run …. To Jesus endless prayer be made, and endless praises crown his head …” 

We have let other powers and concerns reign over us; we have forgotten the power of prayer and praise. Endless … the hymnwriter sings. O God of Wednesday, forgive us for setting you aside last Sunday afternoon. We greet you here, tired and wasting time feeling guilty for not praying earlier. Refresh us with your forgiveness, revive us with your welcoming spirit, and assure us you hear our prayers – the sporadic ones if not the endless ones.  

May our prayers be energized knowing that they are a form of praise as well. We pray to the one who we believe has power and love enough to change us, to heal others, and to transform the world. We do offer praise. O God, help us to live into that praise. Help us to praise you with our actions as well as our lips. 

Re-orient us towards the psalm we offered last Sunday …. O God, be gracious to us and bless us and make your face to shine upon us, that your way may be known upon earth, your saving power among all nations. May we live in a way that reflects your light shining on us. It is tempting to absorb it all and not share outwardly. Help us work with that balance, O God, so our footsteps and handiwork reflect your love in us.  

There is much tragedy in our community and world. Many are grieving the loss of a young man who offered so much hope and encouragement to others. The numbers of deceased are rising in Maui and we hear of migrant deaths at sea. May our responses to tragedy always be grounded in your love for the whole world. As we pay attention to our own hurt, may we also look around to see how we may offer empathy. Lord, we give thanks that you are with us and shine a light out of the darkness. 

There is also much joy! Forgive us when we fail to praise you for the joy! Let every creature rise and bring honors peculiar to our King! We thank you for the opportunity to offer prayers of intercession, but may they be made in a thankful response to your life and love. We hurt so badly when someone we love hurts. May the hurt turn us even nearer to you and bring us a sense of peace. Not numbness. Not apathy. But a deep peace that brings a stillness – even when we ask why, even we cry ourselves to sleep, even when there seem to be no answers. We are grateful for that inner stillness that recalibrates our spirits to you. 

Thank you for hearing our prayer on this Wednesday, O God of all days. Thank you for understanding our rhythms and our ups and downs of attentiveness. As we look towards Thursday, we know that you go with us, and whatever tomorrow brings, we will have you by our side. 

We pray for … 

  • The family of the young man killed on Kingston Pike while walking on the sidewalk
  • The UT community as they grieve for alongside the Kredich family
  • A husband who is now separated from wife; prayers for wife in a verbally abusive relationship; husband needs much help in terms of basic needs; pray that he lets Jesus into his heart and life
  • The family of the man who was driving the car that hit that young man. Drug addiction is so painful for all who are connected to the person.
  • All those who are grieving in our church family – a niece remembering a beloved family member, a sister grieving the loss of brother, a wife dealing with devastation of tragic accident, a nephew traveling to gather with family.
  • All those in our church family who are recovering from surgeries – one in rehab after hip surgery, one who has had heart valve replaced, those who are dealing with melanoma and basal cell carcinomas
  • Students returning to UT, Pellissippi, LMU, and Roane State – and the kindergarteners in their first full week!
  • A sister and brother-in-law. Pray for sister as she is caregiver for husband who has Lewy Body Dementia Dementia and is paralyzed from mid chest down from an accident he had when he was twenty one. He is very depressed and they both are having a difficult time with his disease.
  • A cousin that was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and has been put in a facility. Pray for her brother that has colon cancer and being treated.
  • For a friend whose husband has throat cancer and starts treatment soon.
  • For a friend’s sister that had a stroke a few years ago and fell recently and broke her hip and has afib.
  • For the people in Hawaii.
  • Pray that God will keep my family and me safe as we deal with some cattle issues and in dealing with my brothers who have health issues.
  • For intercession for the protection, deliverance, sanctification, and destruction of destructive forces operating against myself and my family.
  • For a daughter who is having biopsy of growth on thyroid
  • For members of the Beacon of Hope food co-op
  • For daughter going through health issues
  • For family grieving loss of mother and grandmother
  • For my struggles breathing
  • For safety in school this year

We give thanks for ….

  • The life of a 98-year old Servant of Christ who died in Kentucky this week; wonderful childhood memories from home church!
  • Being able to be home after an illness in another country
  • Being home after hospitalization for pneumonia
  • Friends who help in difficult times
  • That my daughter is cancer-free!
  • The ten years of ministry at Beacon of Hope; prayers for church as they continue to reach out

We offer the prayer Jesus taught us …. 

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

*Note – Last Sunday’s opening hymn was Jesus Shall Reign UMH 157 written by Isaac Watts and inspired by Psalm 72. The Psalm last Sunday was Psalm 67; the sung refrain was Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you!