Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of March 29, 2023

Rev. Tim Best

This prayer was originally offered on Sunday, March 26 by Rev. Tim Best after we read scripture from Ezekiel 37:1-14 … the valley of dry bones. Rev. Best has added to this prayer since Monday morning, following the deaths in Nashville. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Almighty God, King of the Universe

We give you thanks for your mission and ministry in our midst. We praise you for your grace that seeks us out and works within us and within our communities. You do notice when our bones feel dried out, our lives feel parched, and the forces of the world crush and overwhelm us. In the midst of tragedy and violence, we feel crushed and overwhelmed. Jesus came amongst us to make your love known by healing the sick, giving sight to the blind, and freeing us all from the powers of sin and death. Thank you for transforming us by your great mercy and inviting us into your kingdom now and in the age to come. 

We are invited into your kingdom, we are invited to share in a living vision of dry bones being given new life. Breathe new life into us, that as our hearts are wrenched open by the senselessness of violence we might participate in your mission of new life and new creation. Though the world tempts us to wring our hands and accept that some things just “are”, we trust in the promise that in Jesus all things truly are possible. Let us live out your mission of peace boldly in our world, in our community, and in our relationships with one another. 

We do pray for those who are sick, those who suffer in body or mind, and those who are hungry. We pray for those who mourn, those filled with anger, for those filled with fear. We pray for friends who await for test results. We pray for families anxious about having enough. We pray for those who are lonely and long friendship and love. O God, our hearts ache for the communities in Mississippi which have been reduced to rubble. We know that your love, your Spirit, can breathe comfort and hope into the people of Rolling Fork and other towns.

Many of us joined together in service this past weekend. We packed boxes, put cleaning kits together, and offered ourselves in other ways as part of our “mission weekend.” It is good for us to gather together to serve and to work towards goals to help in our community and our world. But, we pray that you would shape our hearts so that when we hear the word “mission” we would think of the word “love.” Let our works be always done in love and with the purpose of making your love known. In your Spirit all things we do and all we say can participate in your mission of love in our world. Ezekiel had a vision of you giving new life in the face of death. Help us to share in that vision with our words and our deeds.

Just as Jesus acted for the good of the people he encountered, guide us to pray and work together to act for the good of our neighbors. Often our actions do not alleviate the suffering of our neighbors, and more than we care to admit likely contribute to it. 

Give us a vision of your kingdom, that we may live boldly as those who believe that the world will be set right, and that even the places of dry bones will know new life in Christ Jesus. 

We pray for …

  • Members who are in hospice care; may they know God’s peace and comfort. Prayers for family members who keep vigil.
  • An elderly family friend who is declining
  • A member’s brother and sister-in-law who are about to become parents!
  • Clarity in difficult situations
  • Prayers from a Sunday School class to strengthen members and deepen their discipleship
  • All of the people in Mississippi who are devastated by tornado
  • Direction for our state and federal leaders to make sensible changes to gun laws. 
  • All of the students, faculty, and families at Covenant Christian School in Nashville TN
  • The family of the shooter 
  • Seniors who are making decisions about future
  • A member who is hospitalized; praying her body can fight infection

We give thanks for …

  • A brother who is hiking the Appalachian Trail and taking a break at his 500-mile mark here with family.
  • Caring nurses in the ICU at hospital
  • Church leaders who offer words of encouragement and testimony
  • Police officers and EMTs

We continue to pray for …

  • A member receiving chemotherapy and his family
  • Those who are in rehab
  • Our nation
  • Peace and an end to conflict in Ukraine
  • A friend’s three-year old who is in ETCH; prayers for strength for parents

May we be shaped by his mission to us that we may live out that prayer that he taught us, as we pray it together, saying:  

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.

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