Pastoral Prayer for April 25, 2021 (1 John 3:16-24)
God of gentleness, stir us, renew us, ignite us. As the choir so beautifully told the wondrous story, sometimes the darkness closes in, sometimes sight is gone and fears take over, and yes this and even this, Jesus frees us from. The Wondrous Story is that life conquers death. Hope Conquers despair. Love abides in us and us in you, creator and author of love.
Remind us of these promises when hope is hard to find. It’s been a hard search this year. I mean really God, the weather in Michigan can mime our emotional rollercoaster. A week of 70 degrees and sunshine and the next snow flurries. One day schools are opening and the next week our hospitals are at capacity. One day we see inches of progress and the next the news seems plastered with shootings, from mass gunfire to more black and brown brothers and sisters dying at the hands of police. One day we are thinking, we can do this, Lord thank you for pulling us through, and the next we are saying, wait a second, what, we were in a good place here, come on God, really?
When we ask this, when we feel the stomach dropping rollercoaster of all we experience remind us that you never promised us smooth sailing or a life free of suffering. You did not promise easy. You did not promise perfection. You did promise, abide in me and I will abide in you. You did challenge us to love, not only in thoughts and prayers, but in truth and action.
And so, in truth and action we move awkwardly forward. Truth and action means we write letters and emails to those whom we have elected to effect change we believe will right. When we shop for our own food, we also purchase food for those who cannot afford it or access it themselves. Truth and action means we speak when it’s uncomfortable or unpopular. Truth and action doesn’t look the same to everyone, but it looks like something. Help us God, light a fire beneath us, firm our convictions, strengthen our part in your wondrous story so that we can do your work in the world you so love. In Jesus name, Amen.