BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 14, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

We know you, Universal Love, as one who traverses the galaxies and skips among the stars. You rule the orbit of the planets coursing the golden glow of the sun. How could one such as you be mindful of us mere humans? Yet as the psalmist declares, you have made us a little lower than the angels. We bow in obeisance at such a holy mystery.

O Divine One, hear our prayer.

O God Who Never Turns Away, as we ponder our majestic earth you created, we realize how small the spaces which we inhabit – our confined communities, the routine commutes that define our days. Of course, we hear of life in other regions and even see unfolding tragedies regularly experienced by others. Forgive us, Merciful Lord, for living such insular lives, for not taking the plight of others to heart, for forgetting our brothers and sisters around the globe who are chained by fear, poverty, oppression. Purge us of this neglect, we pray, and also of these other private sins we now lay before you . . . Through your grace you have marked us as your very own, so give us that power from beyond that will enable us to live as the Christians we profess to be.

O Divine One, hear our prayer.

God Over All, as you have blessed us, so bountifully, we lift up your other children whose names we do not know, who live upon shores unfrequented by us. But they are your people and their wounds are our wounds: the people of Hong King who are denied free speech due to the recent passage of the Chinese Security Law; thousands of female health workers in Africa who risk their own lives to travel to remote villages to teach families how to protect themselves against Covid-19; the 40,000 persons in Somalia, Kenya & Ethiopia who are displaced because of drought, famine, and violence.

To these, we add our own prayers of thanksgiving and our pleas for help:

  • Grateful for prayers: nephew now virus-free & now reunited with family
  • Prayers appreciated: 23-yr old with covid is steadily improving
  • Thank you for prayers: elderly aunt on hospice died peacefully on Sunday
  • Thankful member is obtaining help in caregiving for very ill wife
  • Healing for a young son diagnosed with Covid-19
  • Prayers that virus tests for 4 recently exposed are negative
  • Prayers for a wife with a mass on brain, awaiting procedure
  • Healing mercies & calm for a member with recent eye damage
  • Strength & courage for member recovering from serious illness
  • Courage & confidence for member having job interview tomorrow
  • Loved ones isolated at home & assisted living facilities
  • Family members who were exposed to Covid-19 & are being tested
  • Healing of friend’s father who is beginning a new cancer treatment
  • Healing prayers for a frightened nephew (nurse in KY) with Covid-19 & protection for other family members who await test results
  • 2 close friends newly diagnosed with virus, for relief of symptoms

O Divine One, hear our prayer.

We turn over our prayers this day to your abiding presence in the redeeming name of Jesus, who taught us to pray:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 13, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

O Weaver of Goodness, on even murky days, you lace bright strands of blue and yellow within the hours to show us all is not lost. You embroider translucence here and there in the most shadowed moments to tell us we are loved. You choose greens and golds to remind us that you are nurturing our resilience. Your needlework is unsurpassed! May we hold this day tenderly, realizing your exquisite artistry is ever at work, weaving assurance, hope, and joy into our lives.

God of Love, hear our prayer.

O Love that Encircles us, we have accepted your call to discipleship and we honor your invitation to pray. Help us to follow that quiet pattern of prayer set for us by Jesus himself. The Spirit will help us in our weakness, for we rarely know how to express what is going on in our hearts. We keep returning to the same old sins, even though we had every intention of doing better. We are deeply troubled by the pain in our nation and in our world. We feel impotent in helping loved ones who bear such great burdens. Listen now, Good Lord, as we once again turn our struggles over to you  . . . And attend also to these friends in our Church Street family who call out to you this day:

  • Grateful for prayers: young son’s heart surgery on Friday was successful
  • Happy couple celebrate the blessing of their 36th wedding anniversary
  • Thankful for all on the front lines alleviating pain of virus patients
  • Gratitude for a mother’s wonderful example, died Saturday, age 100
  • One offers thanks for a rare visit with an old friend
  • Healing for a young man diagnosed with Covid-19
  • Prayers that virus tests for those recently exposed are negative
  • Prayers for a wife with a mass on brain, facing more tests today
  • Healing mercies & calm for a member with recent eye damage
  • Upholding daughter whose mother was placed on hospice on Friday
  • Pastors leading a graveside service today, that the family will be comforted
  • Healing: Close friend with leukemia that is not responsive to treatment
  • Healing prayers for a frightened nephew (nurse in KY) with Covid-19 & protection for other family members who await test results
  • Four families mourning the recent deaths of loved ones
  • Physician nephew in 11th day of isolation; his wife & 3 sons all well

God of Love, hear our prayer.

We are aware, O Wise One, that you are not impressed by fancy words or well-turned phrases. Perchance you even shiver when we offer another flowery stanza of praise. Still you bear with us, knowing that we do try to please you. And in truth, our words are of little consequence, for it is our earnest attention you desire. Humble our hearts, we pray, that we might always come to you as we are, without flourish or pretense, as we offer that perfect prayer that Jesus taught:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

Join us for a midday devotion

Head to Facebook at noon today for a devotion with Rev. Tim Best!

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 10, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

“Lord whose love through humble service bore the weight of human need,
Who upon the cross forsaken offered mercy’s perfect deed.”

We are truly humbled by your great love, O Lord! Its depth is beyond our imagining. What might love such as yours cost us, we ask, if we also cry out for things to change, for justice, for better lives for those who wither away in want and poverty? Give us courage, in spite of our fear, to take the risk of stepping out of our safe zone and speaking up for truth and equity.

“Still your children wander homeless, still the hungry cry for bread,
Still the captive long for freedom, still in grief we mourn our dead.”

We pray for all whose souls yearn for something better: for a place to call home, for the table filled with fresh food; for the imprisoned, especially those innocent ones whose lives are devoid of mercy; for those mourning dreams long dead and the good health that has eluded them; for loved ones whose days ended before a proper goodbye could be uttered. Give us hope enough to lift up the forlorn, time enough to sit with those who grieve, grace enough to share our bread.

“Called by worship to your service, forth in your dear name we go
To the child, the youth, the aged, love in living deed to show.”

Forgive us, Lord, when we neglect even the smallest gesture that might mean the world to another. Remind us to stop and make time for little ones, as did Jesus, who called the children blessed. Help us encourage our youth who struggle on so many fronts in our complex society, yet who accomplish so much, and who also long for a word of gratitude, of encouragement. We also seek your blessing upon each of these we now name, that your hand would be at work in their lives:

  • Celebration: daughter returns from China after a long work assignment
  • Thankful that a wife’s hysterectomy went smoothly today
  • Gratitude: hospital, health workers & first responders taking great risks to serve others
  • Grateful for prayers: a grandfather died peacefully last night
  • Easing of pain for member following extensive oral surgery
  • Successful heart surgery today for a young son (Blount Co Family Promise) at Vanderbilt; courage & safety for his family who travel with him
  • Prayers for a wife with a 2 cm mass on brain, awaiting more tests
  • Two members seeking relief from depression
  • Healing: Close friend with leukemia that is not responsive to treatment
  • Healing prayers for a frightened nephew (nurse in KY) with Covid-19 & protection for other family members who are currently being tested
  • Four families mourning the recent deaths of loved ones
  • Physician nephew in 9th day of isolation; his wife & 3 sons all well
  • Two families in custody proceedings, grace to uphold children involved

“Hope and health, good will and comfort, counsel, aid, and peace we give,
That your servants, Lord, in freedom, may your mercy know and live.”

Dearest Friend, fix our eyes upon the present moment, not upon the final outcome of our service. Piece by piece you will ultimately gather all our efforts and fold them into your own restoration. For now, we need only remember that when we love your created world with all its intricacies and mysteries, we are loving you. And when we are serving others, we are serving you.

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

Church Street is pleased to welcome Rev. Catherine Clark Nance, Senior Pastor, and Rev. Tim Best, Senior Associate Pastor, to our clergy leadership team. They join Rev. Palmer Cantler, Associate Pastor, Rev. Dr. Jan Buxton Wade, Minister of Spiritual Enrichment, as well as our Visitation Pastors, Rev. Pat Clendenen and Rev. Andy Ferguson. Enjoy this introductory letter from Senior Associate Pastor Tim Best:

 

Dear Church Family,

Greetings to each of you! As I begin my ministry here with you all, I find the simple words of Paul from Ephesians 1:15-17 to be a powerful prayer.

“I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason  I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him.”

I share these words from St. Paul’s letter for several reasons. First, they are good words for the time in which we find ourselves. Except for a small handful of folks that I had met before Covid and before I was projected to be one of your pastors, I have not met you. I have, however, heard of your faith. I have known many of your former pastors; I have met candidates for ministry from Church Street; I have been a part of Holston Conference for over a decade and have seen much of the fruit of your ministry beyond Knoxville. I have been praying intentionally for you, for all of the clergy and staff, and for our shared ministry since this spring when I was informed I would be serving with this storied community of faith. I have prayed that we can gather safely. I have prayed for the countless ministries and projects that have been postponed, cancelled, or reimagined.

Paul gives us a cue for our faith, even in the midst of crisis. Paul unites his prayers with his thanksgivings. Even as I pray for our transition, our return to worship, our longing for some sense of “normal,” I give thanks. Last week I joined a meeting to discuss the Summer Lecture Series. I was blown away by the effort that had been expended to reformat this annual program. I have already begun to connect with Sunday school classes that are meeting over zoom. My heart is full with thanksgiving for such commitment to the gospel and one to another. As Christians we are Easter people, a people of hope, even when our Easter celebrations, our farewells, and our welcomes are a stunted version of what we would like. Nonetheless, these things have happened. Our doors have been shut, but ministry hasn’t stopped. I have heard from some of our members that the shutdown and online meetings have drawn them closer to one another. The Nave is empty on Sunday mornings, but worship carries on. The beauty of our choir has even found a way to shine in this moment by gathering virtually and revisiting recordings. There is much for which to be thankful here at Church Street!

The climax of Paul’s greeting is about Jesus. I haven’t included the whole paragraph, but Paul quickly turns his focus on the God revealed in Jesus. I am encouraged that our shared focus is on Jesus, too. The challenges we face and the work we have ahead are all manageable in the light of Jesus’ love and grace. Though the times are strange I am overwhelmed with hope because of Jesus. This past Sunday I ended my pastoral prayer with the words of the children’s hymn: “Jesus loves me.” Many years ago now, a well-known pastor and theologian, Karl Barth, was asked at the end of his life what had been the most important thing he had learned while teaching and in writing his 38 volumes on theology. Barth reportedly responded with a smile as he began to sing “Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” My prayer is that as we grow and serve together, our hearts may be transformed by Jesus as we come to know him ever more fully and faithfully.

Peace,
Rev. Timothy J. Best

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 9, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

O God of the Day, we come before you this morning in all our varied states. Some us come with peace, others with strife in their hearts. Some of us arrive with hope, others with desolation. Some of us carry a basket of dreams, others hold out empty hands. Still, whether buoyant or heavy-hearted, we enter, knowing that you will offer some nugget from your storehouse of wisdom to lead us through this day. And not only that, you will walk beside us every hour to come. Thanks be to God!

Most Holy Lord, hear our prayer.

O Guardian of the Weak, you rescued Israel from slavery and called her your own. By the frailty of your Son, you rescued humanity from slavery to sin and death. Throughout the eras you have continued to hear the cries of your people and have been faithful to rebuild  the ruins of our lives. We trust you now, O Steadfast One, to continue your work of renewal throughout our wounded world. Heal those places where slavery still exists; break the bonds of those who are held hostage to greed, discrimination, illness and poverty. Strengthen us to pry open the rusty locks of oppression, we pray, that we might then fling wide the gates of freedom for those who suffer everywhere. And as one unified people, we shall celebrate our God!

Most Holy Lord, hear our prayer.

And as we work in your name for a better world, we ask that you also remember these particular ones close to home, our Church Street friends who offer their petitions today:

  • One celebrates a negative Covid test & now emerges from isolation
  • Young woman healing following separation & impending divorce
  • One is grateful that his work has not suffered during the pandemic
  • Prayers appreciated, member is receiving relief from caregiving
  • Recovery of friend who had emergency heart stent
  • Physical and emotional healing within a family
  • Successful heart surgery for a young son (Blount County Family Promise) on Friday at Vanderbilt; courage & safety for his family who travel with him
  • An elderly father in failing health and a brother with post-surgery difficulty
  • 23-yr-old friend with Covid – isolating for 21 days – no family nearby
  • Protection from virus of all loved ones working in high risk positions
  • Two families in custody proceedings, grace to uphold children involved
  • Healing for a brother (no diagnosis yet) and a nephew with Covid-19
  • A peaceful end for a grandfather dying from covid19
  • For order & peace in our nation and for violence to end
  • A peaceful death for an aunt & for a cherished father-in-law

May our dream be as yours, Loving God: that one day peoples everywhere will be set free to live their lives creatively and vibrantly in your name.

Most Holy Lord, hear our prayer.

Faithful One, may our hearts be filled with gratitude these coming hours, as we absorb the soft rain of divine gifts you sprinkle throughout our days. From birdsong to quiet brook, from colored pebble to fragrant flower, from humming bee to gliding cloud, you bless us. We kneel in awe and humility, but also in confidence that nothing in all creation can separate us from your love through Christ Jesus our Lord, who taught us to pray:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

Join us for a midday devotion

Head to Facebook at noon today for a devotion with Rev. Catherine Clark Nance!

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 8, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

You woo us, O God, Sleuth that you are. We would find it annoying if we did not know that you seek us because you care so deeply for us. Truly, the psalmist says that there is nowhere we might flee, but you are there already. Perchance underneath our façade, we want to be known as we really are, without our makeup. And the astonishing reality is that you seem to delight in us more earnestly when we remove our masks, share our doubts, our imperfections and failures freely. Such an impenetrable moving mystery you are. Ah, but such a friend!

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Summer rains refresh us, Lord, and we are grateful for them. But the clouded canopy overhead also carries unease. Our minds wander to times past when we were happier, when our closest companions were part of our everyday lives. Suddenly it seems that we have lost so many to death that few are left who understand us anymore. Gone are their impromptu calls just to see how we were faring, the small jokes we shared, their sensitivity to our own trials. We are on the edge of emptiness, and we often wonder why we ourselves are still here. Maybe our aloneness is to teach us how Jesus felt when his closest friends deserted him, just when he needed them most. Wash us with that summer rain, Lord, and give us courage to walk with assurance and resolve until our own time of departure comes.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

There have been rays of hope these past weeks, O Pillar of Strength, as we wait for the end of the pandemic. And we are thankful that some are able to return to work and enjoy more flexibility. The specter still haunts us, however, and we dare not let down our guard. Give us prudence, we pray, to shield our brothers and sisters who are most vulnerable to the virus, to adhere to guidelines set out by health officials, to demonstrate concern and compassion. You have seen us through other dark eras and you will see us through this time as well. We now remember these particular friends at Church Street who request our prayers of intercession. Attend to each, Good Lord, and walk with them as you work within each situation:

  • Grateful for the life and witness of a faithful member who died yesterday
  • Thanksgiving: cherished member’s latest cancer scans were all clear
  • Thankful for church staff and blessing of online worship & devotionals
  • Grateful for prayers: nephew and fiancé celebrate her recovery from cancer surgery, are awaiting treatment plans
  • Safety for 2 members hiking Mount Whitney in CA
  • Prayers for a brother having important kidney tests today
  • An elderly father in failing health and a brother with post-surgery difficulty
  • Good health for young couple; may their unborn baby grow to full term
  • 23-yr-old friend with Covid – isolating for 21 days – no family nearby
  • Protection from virus of all loved ones working in high-risk positions
  • Loved ones infected with Covid; safety for their family members
  • Two families in custody trials, grace to uphold children involved
  • Healing for a brother on high doses of antibiotics, no diagnosis yet
  • Healing prayers and courage for two undergoing chemotherapy
  • That peace descends upon our violent and fragmented nation
  • For God’s work in the lives of a weary caregiver and his ill wife
  • A peaceful death for an aunt (96) and for a cherished father-in-law
  • Prayers for a physician in Chattanooga, recovering from heart surgery
  • Healing mercies for a father with diabetes and his grieving son

In celebration and in suffering, may we continue to reach out to one another, as you, O Christ, reach out to hold us fast.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Abide in our hearts this day, we pray, for we need your nearness every hour:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 7, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

Life-Giving God, how privileged we are that you have given us life and breath, for just to walk upon your good earth is holy. You call each of us daily to gather under your tent of gratitude. May we assemble there this day with all the saints of the ages who sing of your goodness, for in that glad house we learn the power of a thankful heart.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We confess that sometimes we allow voices around us to swallow us up. Sometimes the noise within our own heads overpowers us. Sometimes the brokenness of the world paralyzes us. But sometimes is not all the time, for there are interludes when your mercy descends as a whisper and holds us as a mother’s soft embrace. Hold us close, Dearest Friend, until our souls are once again in harmony with yours. And hold especially these ones in your grasp today, your people of Church Street, who long for your touch:

  • Grateful for prayers: brother with infection is now home from hospital
  • Thankful for prayers: daughter arrived safely in Boston and starting new job
  • Gratitude: member is steadily recovering after intensive testing
  • Family thankful for a mountain vacation
  • Good health for young couple; may their unborn baby grow to full term
  • 23-yr-old friend with Covid – isolating for 21 days – no family nearby
  • Protection from virus of all loved ones working in high-risk positions
  • Loved ones infected with Covid; safety for their family members
  • Healing for a brother on high doses of antibiotics, no diagnosis yet
  • Healing prayers & grace for a friend undergoing chemotherapy
  • That peace descends upon our violent & fragmented nation
  • Prayers for wife recovering from injuries & strength for her husband
  • Please pray for a mother with Covid-19 & that her son’s test is negative
  • A peaceful death for an aunt (96) and for a cherished father-in-law
  • Healing & courage for 2 members recovering from longterm illnesses
  • Healing within a broken family
  • Prayers for a brother having important kidney tests tomorrow

Bear with us, O God, when we offer you so many laments and grievances. But the truth is we fear deeply what we cannot control. Isaiah’s people also lived in a time of confusion and apprehension; their days were also turbulent and their future unforeseeable. Yet you promised them that the desert surrounding them would burst with new life and would blossom abundantly, that singing would again be heard in the land, that weak hands and feeble knees would once again be made strong. To fearful hearts the prophet proclaimed: “Be strong and do not fear! Here is your God . . .  He will come and save you!” Write those words upon our hearts, O Divine One, lest we forget who holds our present and our future.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Gather up these scattered pieces of prayer, O Lord, and place them close by; and each time you glance their way, your heart will be moved to remember us:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 6, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

Holy Friend, we offer you this unique day. May gratitude be our companion, for you have tucked away treasures in the folds of each hour; we dare not miss these blessings you have so carefully wrapped: the embrace of the sun warming our bones, eyes to behold the faces of friends, the gift of music to lift our hearts heavenward, the sound of a loved one’s voice on the phone, the ability to read the printed page, aroma of welcome rain on dry fields, memories of wonders of bygone days, the honor of working and living in your name. May all our thanksgivings join with all those praises offered throughout the world!

Blessed be your name, O One Who Hears Us!

Loving Overseer, we pray for an understanding of what yet might be. We seek your reassurance, Lord, that your new work will become visible, even in our shortsightedness. In spite of the church’s honest efforts throughout the ages, injustice poverty, cruelty and hypocrisy are on the rise. Keep us from despairing, Gentle Savior, when our works and our prayers do not come to fruition according to our own timetables. Give us grace, we pray, to continue our work of faith, knowing that somehow, some way, you are already using our good intentions and our prayers to make a cosmic difference in our world.

Blessed be your name, O One Who Hears Us!

Preserver of Life, we lift up to your light all who find themselves in distress, illness, adversity this day. We pray for their deliverance from their afflictions and difficulties. Especially we remember those closest to our hearts . . .  Also these friends from our own church family:

  • Gratitude: a husband’s Covid-19 test was negative – prayers appreciated
  • Family felt greatly supported by hospital staff during mother’s last days
  • Gratitude offered for the life of a beloved mother & grandmother
  • Loving couple celebrating 39 years of marriage
  • Member is thankful her depression is lifting
  • Thanksgiving for unborn grandson; prayers that mother & father (in Chicago) remain healthy and that mother will carry her child to full term
  • Prayers for a member mourning the death of her mother on Saturday
  • Protection of all loved ones at high risk of contracting virus
  • Healing prayers and grace for a friend undergoing chemotherapy
  • Prayers for wife recovering from injuries and strength for her husband
  • A single mother in GA & a dear friend in TN in need of good jobs
  • Healing prayers for nephew (physician) with Covid, & safety his family
  • Please pray for a mother with Covid-19 & that her son’s test is negative
  • A peaceful death for an aunt (96) & for a cherished father-in-law
  • Healing mercies & courage for 2 members recovering from illness
  • Healing mercies for a broken family & ill father
  • Healing of a brother with heart ailment; young adult with rare malady
  • Prayers for a grieving couple whose newborn son died in May

Bind our hearts together as one holy community, O Lord, and may we cling together and support one another as we travel that highway that leads to your doorstep.

Blessed be your name, O One Who Hears Us!

Revitalize us this day for faithful service, O Lord, knowing you accept us fully and that you are always pleased to hear the prayer your Son taught his disciples:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

Have a prayer request?

Submit your request confidentially online, and our prayer team will be in prayer with and for you.

BINDING SOUL AND SOURCE

Daily Prayers of the Church Street family

July 3, 2020

Pastor Jan

 

Tower of Strength, as we are on the cusp of our national holiday, we reflect upon those things that make a nation strong. Is it military might, a robust economy, vast territories stretching from shore to shore? Can we boast growing wealth, colossal skyscrapers, granite wonders pointed toward heaven? Scripture says we dare not make our boast in our might or in our riches. As the Holy One spoke clearly through his prophet:  “. . . Let the one who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth . . . “ May we heed these words and ever remember we do not praise our own accomplishments, for all we have attained has come through our God’s largesse.

In Christ alone we place our trust!

O Love Ever Merciful, even today as we celebrate the benefits of our life in this free nation, our sins seem too heavy to carry, and many of them we cannot undo. And by publicly naming our collective sins of greed, arrogance, indifference, we cannot sweep our private failings under the rug. Both have marred your name and thwarted our witness as disciples. These personal misdeeds we now name in the silence of our own hearts . . .   Set us free from the past we cannot change, but open to us that future where we might still take on the image of Jesus.  The apostle claims that anyone who is in Christ is a new creation; the old life is gone and a new life has begun. We believe and claim this good news!

In Christ alone we place our trust!

We acknowledge, O Lord, those who have sacrificed greatly and who continue to sacrifice that we may live in freedom in this country. We must not take their efforts for granted, for our freedom has come at a high price. May we use our liberty according to your will, that we might become a beacon of hope, not for just a few, but for all who walk our continent. Give hope also, we pray, to these believers in our Church Street family who call out this day:

  • Gratitude: a husband’s covid19 test was negative- prayers appreciated
  • Member grateful for 3 days away from her stressful hospital position
  • Thankful for America – a land of flaws, but also a country of hope and freedom
  • Grateful that a wrong has been forgiven
  • Brother in St. Thomas hospital with infection, for diagnosis and healing
  • Continued prayers and diagnosis, beloved wife recovering from injuries
  • Dear friend who has just entered hospice care and her loving family
  • For a good-paying position for a young single mother in Atlanta
  • Healing prayers for nephew (physician) with Covid, and safety for his family
  • A peaceful death for an aunt (96) & for a cherished father-in-law
  • Continued healing mercies for two members facing long recoveries at home
  • For God’s guidance and healing within a broken family and ill father
  • Prayers for a brother awaiting heart surgery, for comfort and peace
  • Healing mercies for a granddaughter with a rare intestinal condition
  • Solace for niece mourning the death of her aunt (brain bleed)
  • Protection from virus for a daughter & a son in Florida, working with the public

In Christ alone we place our trust!

We offer this day to you and to your Beloved Son, for the government rests upon his shoulders and thus we have named him Wonderful Counselor, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

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Church Street is pleased to welcome Rev. Catherine Clark Nance, Senior Pastor, and Rev. Tim Best, Senior Associate Pastor, to our clergy leadership team. They join Rev. Palmer Cantler, Associate Pastor, Rev. Dr. Jan Buxton Wade, Minister of Spiritual Enrichment, as well as our Visitation Pastors, Rev. Pat Clendenen and Rev. Andy Ferguson. Enjoy this welcome letter to Church Street from Rev. Catherine Clark Nance:

Dear Church Family,

I would love to say, “It has been wonderful getting to meet so many of you!” I long for the day to shake hands and ask you to repeat your name for me. In the meantime, I am scrolling through Facebook and looking at a pictorial directory I found in my office from 2016 trying to learn some names and faces.

Since I cannot see you right now, I have spent time seeing where you worship and learn and fellowship. I always feel at home in a United Methodist Church building. Regardless of the architecture, location, and age, there are things all Methodist churches have in common. I have enjoyed walking the hallways and seeing the information on bulletin boards, the leftover hearts from Valentine’s Day that the children taped to the walls, collection bins for UMCOR items as well as local agencies. I love the smell of the library and how the UMW Reading List books are prominently displayed. (The colorful butterflies created by children say that all ages are welcome here!)

Sunday School rooms tell a lot about the people who meet there each week. The items you display and the things you store in cabinets, signup sheets for refreshments and teaching, and prayer concerns written on the board all say that Christian fellowship and education are important. I have spent time in each room I visited offering a prayer of thanksgiving for the learning that has gone on. I imagine conversations that have taken place as members strive to love and care for one another in difficult times.

Although I cannot visualize who sits in which pew, I assume most of you usually sit in the same spot! I have sat in different pews while listening to one of the students practice organ and offered prayers for those who come each Sunday. Prayers of gratitude are offered also for those whose precious memories fill the room as well as those we will welcome in the future.

In this time of being physically apart, I often pray the hymn by John Fawcett:

     Blest be the tie that binds our hearts in Christian love;

     The fellowship of kindred minds is like to that above.

I pray that we are each aware of God’s Holy and Connecting Spirit; the tie that binds. Through the mystery and benevolence of the Holy Spirit, we are indeed together. I am grateful to be joined with you at Church Street United Methodist Church. The clergy here have welcomed Rev. Tim Best and me graciously. We look forward to working alongside Palmer, Jan, Andy, and Pat. Your staff has made transition easy! How fortunate we are to have a committed and talented staff! I know you appreciate them!

As the hymn continues,

     … we shall still be joined in heart

     And hope to meet again (let’s change ‘again’ to ‘soon’!)

Thankful for all of the ways we can be joined!

Blessings to you –

Catherine