At Third Christian Reformed Church in Kalamazoo, when planning a series on prayer the imagery of Revelation 5:8 captured our imaginations. The elders were before the Lamb, each holding a harp and “golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.”
A Psalm Prayer and Blessing for Children
Note: Words in bold type indicate congregational response.
Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory in the heavens.
Through the praise of children and infants
you have established a stronghold
against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger. (Ps. 8:1b-2)
It’s safe to say that most Christians have memorized the Lord’s Prayer. But when we do so, we often become attached to the wording of a specific Bible version. As a result, some of us find it distressing when we hear a different reading of the Lord’s Prayer. When planning worship you might have been surprised by the strong response of some when you use an unfamiliar version. “What next?” they say. “Is nothing sacred?”
How long O Lord, how long?
How long will our news be filled with reports of violence?
How long will neighbor turn against neighbor with words, and fists, and guns?
Why are people filled with such fear and anger that they desire to kill?
Sovereign God we cry “Lord have mercy!”
Sing: Kyrie Eleison (such as Lift Up Your Hearts #637 or another appropriate refrain.)
Sovereign God, we pray for comfort and healing.
"Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other.” (Psalm 85:10)
Who pastors your pastor? The answer, all too often, is “No one.” But, like the rest of us, your pastor needs spiritual support. Your pastor needs people to lift him or her up in prayers of thanksgiving and intercession. If you or a group of people in your church would like to support your pastor in prayer, here are four “need categories” to consider.
Many congregations wrestle with the question of who should lead them in worship, especially in spoken prayer. Historically this has been the task of the pastor, but there is much to be gained by including the different voices of the congregation in the leading of prayer and in other parts of worship. Read the following testimony from one church that has moved toward such a practice and what they discovered along the way.
This guided intercessory prayer could be used for a variety of liturgical occasions, but may be most appropriate for Pentecost, World Communion Sunday, or another service that focuses on church unity.