Gracious and merciful Father, Mother, and Creator,
We come here this morning in our weakness, brokenness, and imperfection
— knowing that we have failed to hear those crying out for help,
to see those whom we choose to ignore,
to speak out against injustice,
to understand what is really important in life, or to move forward in your will for us.
We come here this morning each one of us with our own share of pain, loss, disappointment, and helplessness
— hemmed in by barriers and obstructions over which, it seems, we have little control.
But we also come this morning in gratitude and in faithful expectation knowing that your love and forgiveness, grace and strength, are abundantly available for all of us and that in you all things ultimately work together for good.
Whatever our physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual condition, help us look beyond differences and recognize humanity in all of your children.
Help us to hear your “still, small voice” comforting and guiding us.
Help us to promote reconciliation and peace in words and in actions.
Help us to comprehend that which is true, right, and good.
And help us to break down barriers and remove obstructions
that we might move towards a fuller, more loving relationship with you and with others.
We ask your blessing upon each of us here this morning and upon this church
that it might grow in its mission and ministry to all your children.
We also ask your blessing upon all those who cannot be here this morning.
We pray for those incapacitated by illness or injury and confined to hospital beds, nursing homes, or their own homes,
that they might find the help and healing they need.
We pray for all caregivers who in serving others serve your Son.
And, finally, we pray for all those in the military who have been wounded in body, mind, and spirit,
that they might get the care, support, and rehabilitation that they deserve.
We pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, in whom we all find our true healing and wholeness. Amen.
Jo D’Archangelis, Fallbrook UMC, California, 2011