Pastoral Prayer—February 14, 2021

Gracious and Loving God, in the morning when we rise….and in the evening when we lie down… and in all the moments of our day in between….We believe you are with us and love us.   

We thank you…O God….for your eternal presence and your gracious care that follows us throughout all our lives—We especially thank you for your steadfast love which always embraces us and walks with us. 

Grant us the strength of faith to hold on and to believe… even when the way seems unclear….and even when our circumstances seem confusing and overwhelming.  Like Peter, James, and John….help us to climb onto the mountain to experience you in all your majesty and glory…but then to come down from the mountain to live out our lives with faith, and care, and compassion, and service, and love.

We pray today for those who are ill and grieving…for those who are frightened and discouraged….and for those who are weary and tired. Touch each one of these with your healing power and boost them with an infusion of hope……Bless as well the care givers, loved ones, and friends who reach out to them with help, encouragement, and support.

And be with us, O God, as we seek to be a community—to be a church—where all are welcomed and where all are valued—Where all are celebrated for the talents offered and for the gifts volunteered—For we know, O God, that we are created to be in relationship with one another—and that we need the diversity of the various parts in order to be a whole and functioning body.  May we be….and may we more and more become….that sacred body here at the First Congregational Church of Ann Arbor….where we intend to shine a beacon of your love and hope and freedom to our whole community and world.

Loving God, on this Valentine’s Day, help us to be conscious of those we love…and grateful for those who love us…….And help us to remember that you are the power and hope of the souls that love you….and the strength of those who seek to serve you—Enable us this week to see with a heart of faith….and to live and walk by trust.  Amen.