Prayers of the People
—September 3

By Roger Winship

Gracious and loving God, Father of all creation, in this moment of peace quiet our souls so we can hear your voice and feel your presence as we join together offering prayers of thanksgiving and intercession to God. We thank you for one more day and the joy of being together in this sacred place of worship, for the love of family and the many blessings you have bestowed on each of us. We bask in the glory of your kingdom and your world of creation; awed by the beauty of nature, warmed by the lingering summer rays of the sun, caressed by gentle breezes, and comforted by the rustling of shimmering leaves. We are thankful for the abundance of life, the diversity of people from all nations, the colors of the garden, the birds that sing, and the promise of another day as we rejoice in the splendor of the setting sun.

We praise you Lord with grateful hearts and pray that we can be worthy of your love. Help us to know what is most important in life and what our purpose is for being. Open our hearts and minds to your word, turning us to scripture so we can find our way. Are we not put on this earth to simply love one another, sharing God’s generous love given to us through his living sacrifice? You love us so much Father of mercy, show us how to love one another. While no one has ever seen God, help us to know that if we love one another the Lord of hosts lives in us, and his love will be perfected through us.

Life is not easy for so many, and a burdensome challenge for those who do not have the advantages in life we too often take for granted. Guide us everlasting God so we can hear the cry for help from the sick, the poor, the orphan, the unemployed, the elderly, the refugee, the depressed, the lost, and the oppressed. We pray for the homeless, those who are lonely, victims of crime, anyone facing temptation and suffering with addiction. [Please take a moment of silence for your own personal reflection and petition.] Hear our prayer God of love and angel of mercy, as we pray for the victims and thousands of volunteers devastated by Hurricane Harvey throughout Houston and the Gulf region. We give thanks for all care providers, health practitioners, and everyone serving in the name of Lord to help and support people in need. Together we ask Good Shepherd that you guide our leaders in business and government to do what is needed in our cities, especially our city of Chicago and throughout the world, so we can bring an end to violence and live in peace as good stewards of God’s truth and his generous gift of life.

Show us spirit of Christ how to see the world through your eyes and know that everyone is important, everyone has a story to tell, and let us not be distracted and consumed by those things which separate us from your love. Help us lamb of God to find the answers by following you as we go through each day always trusting in you, finding ways to do good, feeding on your faithfulness while taking delight in the ways of the Lord, knowing that he will see to the desires of our heart. With love in Christ we pray, Amen.