Prayer: Our glorious God and Father, we bless your name today and thank you for your many mercies given to us through the work of your Son. We are your people and the sheep of your pasture, and we have been rescued from the miseries of this life because of what Jesus, the Good Shepherd of the sheep, has accomplished. We thank you for having rescued us from the greatest pit and the greatest struggle: our sin and separation from you. We confess that we still struggle in this life due to our exile from the land of promise, our eternal home, and the place we long to be. Because we are exiles, we feel the weight of this life and the many miseries that come to a fallen world with fallen people. Too often, Father, we do not wait for your acts of providence with patience. Too often, we strive against that which you tell us to do. We fail to pray and plead with you, expressing our trust in you. Formality is not what you desire but a heart and life that fully trusts you. Forgive us and help us to trust you. We know that you have proven yourself to us repeatedly. We know that your Word reminds us over and over to place our whole hope and life in your hands. We know that we are safe there. Yet, we struggle. We sin. At times we live as practical atheists. Please grant us more of the Holy Spirit who convinced our minds and hearts of your eternal love that was sealed when you wrote our names in your book. These things we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Scripture Meditation: Ps. 40
Prayer: Grant almighty God that your love would echo in the hearts and minds of your people today in such a way that your people would not only renew their love, but display it all around us. We know that your Word declares that you are love. We know that the Savior tells us that others will know that we commune with him as we demonstrate our love towards others. Grant to us a love that is patient and kind; a love that does not envy or boast; a love that is not arrogant or rude. Grant to us a love that does not insist on getting our way but is mindful of the needs of others. Forgive us, Father, for the many times we think in selfish ways and behave with thoughtless actions. Please help us to think long and hard about the mandate to love our enemies as we love our friends. Please help us renew our minds and actions by your Word so we can love as you love. Please help us to pray for those who revile, persecute, and curse us. Please grant to us that perfect love demonstrated by you when you gave us your Son. These things we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Scripture Meditation: 1 Cor. 13
Prayer: Grant, Almighty God, your presence with your people as we gather to worship you on another Lord’s Day. We are very grateful that you have given us this one day in seven in which you call us apart from our worldly cares and recreations and remind us of the eternal hope we have in you. We are in need of this constant reminder because we are creatures of dust. We are often enamored with the things of this life, and we often set our hopes and sights on those things that are passing away. Please forgive us, Father. We know how it dishonors you when we cast aside the rich provision of this day for trinkets. Forgive us for our lack of zeal about public worship. May we, like the psalmist, grieve when we are hindered from it. Please grant us a longing, delight, and true joy to worship you as you have commanded us. Please grant us a measure of your Holy Spirit and bless those men who speak your Word today. These things we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Scripture Meditation: Is. 58:13-14; Col. 3:1-4
Prayer: Our Father, we thank you that your Word tells us that you stand able and ready to help us with whatever concerns and troubles we face in this life. Indeed, our greatest struggle was that we were at odds with you. We were your enemy, yet you rescued us from the pit of that life full of deception and deep alienation from the One who made us. We thank you that you drew us up out of the pit of despair and destruction and placed our feet on the solid Rock that is your beloved Son. As a result, you have made our hearts glad, and we joyfully praise you, striving to live in obedience to you. Yet, we know that we fall short of all that you command us. As your children, we desire to please you and are grateful that you accept our good works as they are found in Christ. Still, we do fall short, and it grieves us. We mourn the indwelling sin in our lives that prevent us from thoroughly enjoying you in this life. We long for the day when our battle with sin and the deception of our flesh will end. Still, you have put a new song in our mouth, and we gladly proclaim it to others. Because of the work of your Spirit, we delight to do your will and strive, by all the means you have given to us, to obey your law. Please help us, Father, to love and serve you as you commanded. Please grant to us your Holy Spirit, as you have promised as we ask, so we can rightly serve you, our God and King. We pray these things through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Scripture Meditation: Eph. 3:20; Ps. 29
Prayer: Our Father, we are thankful that we have been granted access to your throne to bring you our praise and petitions. It is fitting that we, as your redeemed people, would ascribe to you glory and strength because you alone are worthy of it. You sit above the circle of the earth and regard the inhabitants as grasshoppers. Yet, as immense and mighty as you are, you have regard for us and care about our smallest concerns. Therefore, we come today to pray and plead with you for those things that trouble our minds and souls and ask that you would hear us for the sake of your Son. We confess that we are often prayerless in our prayers. However, we know that your Word tells us that you hear us as we pray. Therefore, we pray for those in our families who have not embraced the hope of Christ and the Gospel. We pray that you would open their eyes to the truth and convince them of their great need for the Savior. Please impress upon them their mortality and show them the folly of rejecting the only One who alone saves. We pray this knowing that we are powerless to convince minds and change hearts. Yet, we also pray that we would be bold to not only speak a word in season but to live according to your Word as godly examples for our lost family members. Be pleased, Father, to rescue many and save them from the misery of their fallen condition, we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Scripture Meditation: Ps. 29; Is. 40:22
Prayer: Almighty God, as we bow before your majesty on another Lord’s Day, we are reminded that you are holy, and we live in a world of sin and misery. Yet, you are pleased to rescue sinners from their miserable estate and bring them to your side. We confess that we are often consumed with feelings of abandonment and loneliness. We acknowledge our tendency to succumb to the effects of this world ruined by sin. Yet, you have made great promises to us and rescued us from those times when we were despairing and despondent. You do so, usually, through the ordinary means of grace. Through the ministry of your Word, prayer, and the sacraments, we are strengthened and reminded of your eternal love for us. Therefore, Father, as we gather with your people today, we desire to tell of your name to our brothers and sisters. Amid the congregation, we desire to sing your praise. We know that you do not need our worship, but you have given it to us to help us in our pilgrimage through this life to the life you are preparing for us. Be pleased, holy God, to dwell among your people today as they gather to praise and hear from you. We desperately need the comfort of your Word and the ministry of your Spirit. We long to see your glory and desire to see you glorified through the songs we sing, the words we hear, and the prayers we offer. Thank you, our God, for being patient with us in our weakness and cause us to strive after holiness as you have commanded, we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen,
Scripture Meditation: Ps. 22:22-26