Wednesday, January 9, 2008

full of compassion and grace

Father, Creator of heaven and earth. Your majesty surrounds and fills your creation. Your glory engulfs your creation. You created the universe and set in place the laws the govern it (Jer 33:25). The earth is yours and everything in it (Ps 24:1). May all creation sing to your praise.

But father, through our sin, we have brought a plague upon the earth. The entire creation longs to be rescued (Ro 8:22). You created the earth and said it was good. You created man as the culmination of creation, and you said creation was very good. But, we sinned and brought disaster to ourselves and all creation.

Still, you did not leave us in that trap. We must all die, but you have worked so that we will not remain cast out from you (2 Sam 14:14). You sent Jesus to die for us. You raised him from the dead and gave us a new birth. You adopted us as children and gave us an eternal inheritance. May your church rejoice and delight in the amazing grace you have shown us. May we love you fully and live with unconstrained thanks for your greatness, your grace and mercy.

And father, may we turn our thanks into action for your creation. We live in a world where millions of people die every year because they lack clean water. We live in a world where malnutrition takes the lives of millions more. And still more lives are taken by simple diseases that could be easily prevented or cured if people had access to the care they needed.

I confess the sins I and so many in your church have committed by turning a blind eye to the needs of others. Awaken us to the cause of suffering people. Give us a heart that breaks over the suffering of others. Give us a heart that rejects the gluttonous and selfish focus in and around us. Give us a passion for helping those in such desperate need. Let us not be conformed to the pattern of the world any longer, but transform our minds to know your will (Ro 12:2).

Father, I ask that you bless and magnify the ministries of Christian organizations that serve your causes in the developing world. Groups such as Samaritan's Purse, Blood:Water Mission, World Vision, Compassion International, World Hunger Fund and others work to take your love across the globe. Help these groups find ways to use their resources efficiently and effectively. And put in the hearts of your people to provide the resources these groups need to do their work. And father, send your Spirit ahead of these groups to prepare the hearts of people to see your love in action through these ministries. Bless these groups so that they can save lives, but most importantly, bless people around the world by saving their souls.

And father, here in our own neighborhoods, there is great need. In my community, there are illegal workers struggling to survive. There are lonely people looking for hope. There are hurt people trying to heal. Give your people the strength, faith and wisdom to reach out to those in need in our own neighborhoods. May we preach good news to the poor, proclaim freedom for the prisoners, open the eyes of the blind and liberty for the oppressed (Lk 4:18).

Father, let us be a light to the spiritually blind around us. I pray you would open the hearts of my parents, Nick, Mark, Rick, Caroline, Jeri, Dawn, Frank, and Stacy. Show them your grace and draw them to you. Help me and other Christians be a witness for you to those who are still outcast from you.

I lift up to you again the desires of the friends and family. Give Mike wisdom to make the right decisions. Bring Frank home safe. Give comfort and healing to Nancy, Debra, Melanie and Ella.

Give your church wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may know your will and bear fruit. May we glorify you along with all creation.

I pray in the name of my glorious savior Jesus. Amen.

1 comment:

g9ine said...

Thank you for this prayer.

I ask that you bless and magnify the ministries of Christian organizations that serve your causes in the developing world. Groups such as Samaritan's Purse, Blood:Water Mission, World Vision, Compassion International, World Hunger Fund and others work to take your love across the globe. Help these groups find ways to use their resources efficiently and effectively. And put in the hearts of your people to provide the resources these groups need to do their work. And father, send your Spirit ahead of these groups to prepare the hearts of people to see your love in action through these ministries. Bless these groups so that they can save lives, but most importantly, bless people around the world by saving their souls.