A Call to Worship
Lent 6C (Passion Sunday) 2013
Psalm 31: 9-16

Holy God, we come together to worship you, and together we say:
“I am trusting you... you are my God! My future is in your hands...”

Reliable God, help us to reconcile our plans and dreams with reality.
Regardless of circumstances, our Caring God is here with us now.

Sustaining God, “...Let your favour shine on your servants ...today,
and “...in our unfailing love, save us...” from all that threatens our peace.
Bright Light of God, shine your radiance and warmth into our hearts
and minds, that we may offer you our thanks, prayers and praise. Amen.

Prayers of Petition and Trust
Lent 6C (Passion Sunday) 2013
Psalm 31: 9-16

Compassionate God, these are the words of a person in desperate need:
“...Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am in distress.... My body and soul are
withering away. I am dying from grief; and my years are shortened by
sadness. Misery has drained my strength; I am wasting away from within...”

Throughout our life, each of us have had times of misery, loss and grief—
just as this man experienced, when all that we hold dear has fallen apart!
We ask of you, Nurturing God, that you will bring healing and wholeness to
your needy children, through the tenderness and warmth of your compassion.

Dependable God, in your mercy, hear our prayers for all distressed people.
We pray for people who are struggling in relationships; for people who are
abused or neglected because of their race, traditions, culture, or their religion;
because of their sexual orientation; their perceived anti-social habits; their age;
or their infirmity. If theirs was a voice that could be heard, they probably would
say: “Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am in distress...In your unfailing love,
save me.”
Forgiving God, give us the grace to make our contribution towards
these prayers being answered, and help us to be sensitive to the needs of people.

Creating God, your whole creation is just one expression of the Being of God,
and we pray that our trust in God’s Being will continue to grow and be nurtured;
and that through that trust, we will be enabled to develop a deeper serenity of
spirit; and peace of heart and mind to live with and to grow through, the harsh
realities and challenges that life presents to each one of us, now and in the future. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Lent 6C (Passion Sunday) 2013
Psalm 31: 9-16

The troubling experiences of that long ago Psalmist are not very unique!
Too often, I have heard similar stories for it to be a unique experience!
The reality of his situation was that people he knew and trusted had
conspired against him; and included his dearest friends, his neighbours,
colleagues and other acquaintances. Truth was another casualty in that
sad and sorry affair, and its impact on him was devastating! Has this
been your experience as well? It has certainly been mine, and from
people whom one would think would be filled with compassion and care
for their colleagues in the faith, and especially in the church! Please God,
forgive all members and administrators in church communities who play
their “power games”, and who apparently have no conscience about their
actions, their words, or the influence they exert over other people! God,
please forgive me, when I too have been guilty of such thoughtless acts!

Creative pause: God forgive all church people who play “power games”.

My next questions are how do we fix this situation and stop people from
manipulating others to fulfil their own ambitions? Do we speak out against
them and condemn them publically? Do we seek to counsel them to help
them realise their wrong-doings? Or do just we ignore these signs of spite,
jealousy, or even bigotry; and pray that we are courageous enough to live
and let live? Wiser people than I could answer these questions, but for me—
at times, it can only just be survival! Plus, the courage to keep going and to
try to fulfil what I believe to be my calling. One of the unfortunate side-effects
with situations like this, is its impact on our community worship life! How hard
it is to warmly greet these people at worship; to look them straight in the eye
with loving forgiveness; and to offer prayers that their faith may be nurtured!

Creative pause: The unfortunate side-effect this has on our worship of God!

When I am all twisted up inside with a badly dinted ego and these mixed emotions,
these secret inner feelings intrude on my own acts of worship; on how receptive my
mind and heart is to the leading of the Spirit in my praise of God; and in my prayers
for my community of faith; when I know that “they” are there too! Redeeming God,
give me an open heart and mind to God’s presence and leading! My prayer and
response is: “....I am trusting you, O Lord...You are my God! My future is in your
hands..... Let your favour shine on your servant. In your unfailing love, save me...”

Creative pause: “You are my God! I am trusting you.... In your unfailing love, save me...”

Unless stated otherwise, all Bible readings and extracts used in these weekly Prayers and
Meditations are from the ‘New Living Translation’, © 1996. Copyright. All rights reserved.
Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189 USA.

*The additional weekly numbering is from the Revised COCU Indexing Scheme
COCU = ('Consultation on Church Union'); as it offers an easy sequential numbering
for the Revised Common Lectionary for the Church Calendar.

If any part of these Prayers and/or Meditations is used in shared worship, please provide
the following acknowledgement:
© 2013 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year C. Used with permission.


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