Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of November 24, 2021

Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness, come into his presence with singing. Know that the Lord is God. It is he that has made us and we are his; We are his people and the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise. 

Give thanks to him and bless his name. For the Lord is good, his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations. 

(Ps 100:1-5)

Today indeed we make a joyful noise before the Lord and raise our voices in song!  O One of Unsearchable Greatness, we remember how your breath wafted over the chaos, bringing a sublime calm and order.  We remember how you fashioned from nothingness the heavens and the earth, both teeming with life. We ponder your terrifying power that created the mountains and called forth the waters, giving them shape and order and purpose.  And in your own loneliness, you gave life to humankind, counting us as your beloved companions.  How mystifying is your universe, O Lord, and our words fail to touch its grandeur.  And how privileged we are that we might join our voices with all generations past in blessing your Holy Name!

God of All Goodness, hear our prayer.

You have honored us with Jesus Christ, whom you sent to reveal the truth of your love, your hopes and dreams for your people.  And even when he was ignored, abused, and crucified, he told us he understood and that we were forgiven.  How astonishing is the depth of your affection and the wideness of your mercy, O Lord! 

God of All Goodness, hear our prayer.

We give you thanks, O Guide Above and Beside Us, that we can bring our prayers to you, for you are the God who listens to our lives; and we know there have been moments when we have chosen the wrong over the right. We remember those instances when we could have helped others, but we attended to our own priorities.  There were those persons we could have befriended, but we hurried past.  There were times we could have shared a loving thought with someone who was hurting, but we remained silent. There were occasions when we could have expressed our faith in you, yet we uttered mere platitudes. We thank you, Merciful One, that it is not too late for our transformation.  Blot out the sullied parts of our past and cleanse our motivations.  We can never reach perfection, but we trust in your Spirit to take everything that we do and use it for your good purposes.

God of All Goodness, hear our prayer.

Spirit of Wholeness, pour out your balm of healing upon your people who are in pain and sorrow. Heal the divisions and brokenness within our own nation, we pray. Our hearts also break when we hear of migrants from the Middle East, Africa, Europe and Asia who endure freezing temperatures and deprivation as they seek a place to call home; when we learn of the increased violence against the innocents in Sudan; as we receive news that 14 million people in Afghanistan now face daily hunger; and as another Covid19 wave sweeps across Germany, the Netherlands, Austria and Russia. Forgive us when we separate ourselves from the suffering of others near and far. May all who are hurting cling to you even when their hope has grown thin. 

God of All Goodness, hear our prayer.

And as we offer petitions on behalf of our friends at Church Street, strengthen our sense of kinship with all whom you love:

  • Church family celebrates a son’s engagement
  • Member grateful for prayers, recovering well following surgery
  • Thankful an ill friend is home from hospital
  • Grateful to all who assembled and delivered 130 Thanksgiving boxes for our hungry neighbors
  • Gratitude for a friend’s successful knee replacement
  • Appreciation for prayers: Dear friend died in peace and comfort
  • One praises God for her multitude of blessings
  • Thankful for prayers: Ill father returning home for Thanksgiving
  • Heart patient thankful for prayers of church on his behalf
  • Gratitude for husband’s healing following heart surgery
  • Husband thankful for wife’s recovery from bronchial infection
  • Thanksgiving for continued healing following surgery
  • God’s healing presence with couple who remain secluded due to illness
  • Safety for a young son, musician who travels widely
  • All who are grieving during the holidays
  • Safe travel to California for soon-to-be-grandmother
  • Courage, guidance for one enduring physical emotional trials
  • A mother who faces another colon surgery and healing of her dangerous infection
  • Healing relationship between a father and his adult children
  • Continued prayers for member with vision impairment
  • Correct diagnosis of Parkinson’s-related illness
  • Peace for a dying brother and the presence of the Spirit with all family members
  • Family sustaining multiple challenges during the holidays
  • Cherished father in rehab, in failing health 
  • Prayers for our church and our 2021 stewardship effort
  • God’s guidance and healing for a mother with cancer diagnosis 
  • Continued strength for member in cancer treatment
  • Prayers for gravely ill daughter and her distraught family
  • Correct diagnosis for member experiencing heart problems 
  • Upholding church family grieving death of young son 
  • Four family friends mourning deaths of loved ones
  • Sister who faces cancer scans December 3

God of Goodness, we celebrate your presence with us and pray you would wrap us all in your peace each night, as you turn down the lights of heaven. May our dreams be filled with memories of your eternal grace. We lay these prayers at your feet in the name of your most caring Son Jesus, who taught us to pray in this way:

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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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family*

Week of November 17, 2021

Rev. Tim Best

Most Caring God, as we approach the holiday of Thanksgiving, remind us that true thanksgiving is not a single day of the year, but an eternal season of gratitude, a lifestyle that we practice our entire lives. Fill our hearts to the brim with a sense of the magnitude of your grace in our world.  And give us the courage to respond to that truth by spreading it around.

Caring God, provoke us to love and good deeds.

We pray this day for our community. As the weather grows colder we think of our neighbors with unreliable heat, poor insulation, those who work outdoors, and those who live without walls or heat. We pray for our neighbors who experience any sort of violence, and those who live as if they have no hope. We pray for all those who work to ensure the well-being of others within our community. 

Caring God, provoke us to love and good deeds.

With love and concern we lift up our nation, the world, and all those who seek to lead. We know the problems that face our world are many, but we do not live as those without hope. As our community has sought to honor veterans this past week, may we commit to hold the needs of those who have served constantly in our prayers. 

Caring God, provoke us to love and good deeds.

We lift up thankful hearts for all progress made against Covid. We are grateful for all doctors, nurses, caregivers, administrators, and support staff that have kept hospitals and clinics running. We are thankful for vaccines that are now available for elementary age children. We are thankful for ongoing research and development of medications and treatments for this disease. We are thankful also for the work we have been given to care for one another and our neighbors during this season. 

Caring God, provoke us to love and good deeds.

We pray this day for those in our congregation who are struggling with health issues, those who are alone, and those who grieve. Be an ever-present companion to them. Give us eyes to see the pain of others in our midst and the courage to respond in love.  Especially, we ask that you would look with kindness and mercy upon all your children at Church Street who bring to your door a world of cares.  And also receive the gratitude that is expressed by those who have profoundly felt your mercy in recent times:

  • Family celebrates: Husband’s cancer scans all clear
  • Grateful for prayers: Hip replacement surgery in DC successful
  • Thanksgiving: All well following delicate surgery at Vanderbilt 
  • Prayers appreciated: Friend approved for her 1st apartment
  • Gratitude for prayers: Anxieties have eased
  • Two families thankful for beach vacations
  • Member celebrates the end of his Covid isolation 
  • Gratitude: husband admitted to hospital, now improving
  • Thankful: Young daughter mending well following tonsillectomy
  • One thankful that recent cancer scans were negative
  • Praises: Injured member is receiving proper care in hospital
  • Prayers that recent back procedure will prove effective
  • Safety for a young son, musician who travels widely
  • Family grieving the death of mother on Monday
  • Family mourning death of a father this week
  • Continued prayers for member with vision impairment
  • Church couple struggling with Parkinson’s diagnosis
  • Wisdom for daughter anxious about her mother’s care
  • Prayers for our church and our 2021 stewardship effort
  • Healing prayers for daughter hospitalized with sepsis
  • Correct diagnosis for member experiencing heart problems 
  • Upholding church family grieving death of young son
  • Son-in-law grieving the deaths of family members 
  • All who are bereaved and hurting during the holidays
  • Strength for couple caring for two very ill parents
  • Sustaining member in extended cancer treatment
  • Dear friend (ALS) – now facing hospice care; sustaining prayers for friends assisting her  

Today we recommit ourselves to the work and ministry of this local church. Guide our hearts as we discern how to most fully and faithfully give to you,       O Christ. Bless the gifts that have been offered this commitment week, and bless those who pledge to support the church financially in the year ahead. May our gifts always be used for the work of your kingdom. 

Caring God, provoke us to love and good deeds.

Hear us, Heavenly Father, in all that we ask, for we pray as your Son taught 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.

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*Adapted from a prayer by Stephen M. Fearing.

Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of November 10, 2021

Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

And what do you have that you did not receive

And if also you did receive it, why do you boast 

as not having received it?   (I Cor. 4:7)

Ah, the apostle has rightly spoken – for what have we acquired that did not come to us from Divine beneficence?  What do we possess that was not provided by the hands and sacrifice of others?  Forgive us, Lord, for our narrow thinking and for our failure to respond fully to your grace. We confess we have withheld that which is rightly yours, spending mainly to satisfy our own limited interests.    We have withheld even ourselves, ignoring your continued offer of fullness of life through Christ. We know we can do better; by your grace, may it be so.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Enduring Cornerstone, remind us that we are the living stones which form your Church. We are bound together by your very self, who gave your all that we might live. Your gifts cascade so freely we are prone to forget they come with responsibility. Chip away our rough and selfish edges, we pray, that we might fit more tightly together, adding strength and shape to your holy edifice of benevolence.  We would be known as believers with open hands and open lives, willing to sacrifice so that the nameless and forgotten ones are drawn into your fortress of love.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Nearest Friend, this week we pray for our friends and neighbors, near and far.  Comfort and deliver especially all who are living with grave losses, those who live in the throes of poverty and need, others who are oppressed by violence, and those who flee war and devastation in their homelands.  Guide us and all in power to work for the common good. As scripture has taught: those whom much is given, much is required.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

God of the Circling Years, your faithfulness spans generations, and your mercy never fails to astound us.  In Jesus, you walked where we walk, shared the burdens of life, were touched by the same joys, temptations, and sorrows as we. We need hide nothing from you, for you are aware of our longings, our pain, our hopes, and our fears. Therefore, we turn again to you on bended knee, acknowledging you as our Source of all healing and wholeness.  

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Aware that you accept every prayer uttered in earnest, we lay before you these that come from the hearts of your people at Church Street.  In your mercy, accept the praise of those who bring thanksgiving and touch the souls of those who are bruised and afflicted:

  • Grateful that ill husband now safely placed in rehab facility
  • Prayers appreciated: Grandson is managing chemo well
  • Gratitude for prayers: Weekend wedding was perfect
  • Member in rehab making steady progress
  • Thanksgiving: Heart surgery deemed successful
  • Thanks for prayers – badly bruised hand is healing
  • Praises! Family welcomes newborn baby after 3 miscarriages
  • Pray that one will be approved for an apartment
  • Prayers: Young daughter undergoing surgery Monday and her family
  • Granddaughter in D.C. having hip replacement Monday
  • Prayers that recent back procedure will prove effective
  • Healing for one recovering from delicate surgery at Vanderbilt today
  • Courage and strength for family grieving death of young son
  • Son-in-law grieving the deaths of family members due to Covid 
  • Solace for member coping with anxiety
  • Strength for couple giving care to ill parents
  • Wisdom for a young son contemplating dropping out of school
  • Sustaining member in extended cancer treatment
  • Dear friend (advancing ALS) – guidance in finding residential care 
  • Healing prayers for daughter hospitalized with sepsis 
  • Healing for two members enduring immense back pain
  • Strength, courage for husband with Parkinson’s

In addition to these, O Lord, we ask that you would gift us with wisdom and patience as we strive for that peace which passes all understanding.  And now,  as you are the God of All Good Gifts, release in us the spirit of new life – that life which is in full relationship with you and your Blessed Son who taught us to pray in this way:

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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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of November 3, 2021

Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

O Lord of Tender Mercies, we have only human words to utter when we turn to you; but the truth is that words fail, never fully capturing what is in our hearts.  So listen closely to those longings that live beneath our words – those longings which even we ourselves cannot name. Bend low, we pray, and hear us as we open our hearts in the stillness of these moments: . . . . . . . . . . Comb through our desires, we pray, discarding what is unworthy, and enriching what shows promise.  Our lives are not our own, Trusted Friend, so grant that our desires may come to reflect what you, in your goodness, wish for us.

God of Grace, hear our prayer.

O God Without Boundaries, forgive us for taking your abundance for granted, for presuming that your gifts are ours by right.  Since you love all the same, how audacious of us to believe we deserve the first fruits.  Truly there is enough for everyone: for every race and nationality; for every gender, class, and culture; for every religious group and political party.  You have little knowledge of margins and perimeters, for your kingdom is bounded solely by compassion and love of humankind. In this season of harvest, loosen our grip on whatever has come to us through your largesse. Help us to learn what it really means to love our neighbor as ourselves.

God of Grace, hear our prayer.

O God of the Watchful Eye, you note every fallen sparrow and hear the cry of the loneliest creature; but sometimes we become discouraged when we survey the despair and pain that plague your people.  So many are shadowed by tragedy and loss, by physical and emotional maladies, and we confess that we feel too weak to carry the burdens of so many others.  Renew our resolve, Good Lord, and remind us that when we feel helpless, your Spirit is always sharing the load.  You ask that we do solely what we can, and somehow, you will make our efforts sufficient.

God of Grace, hear our prayer.

Therefore, with hearts full of hope in your faithfulness, we offer these specific needs and thanksgivings on behalf of your people at Church Street:

  • Thankful that elderly mother is clear of Covid
  • Gratitude: Son completed rehab for addiction, may have experienced a breakthrough
  • Gratitude: Covid numbers are decreasing in our area
  • One offers praise upon her retirement after long work life
  • Prayers appreciated: Hospitalized father is improving
  • Praises: Ill adult daughter continues to make strides in combating Covid
  • Gratitude for God’s grace and for friends in supporting my family during recent bereavements
  • Thanksgiving that a major work project is completed
  • Courage for husband recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s
  • Courage and strength for family, father died on Tuesday
  • Grandson hospitalized this week for chemo
  • Courage for family bereft following sudden death of son
  • Healing prayers for husband with severe heart issues
  • Sustaining wife in early stage of chemo treatment
  • Upholding two recently widowed
  • Guidance for daughter caring for two ill parents
  • Wisdom for a young son who wishes to drop out of high school
  • Healing for a badly bruised hand
  • Wisdom for someone facing an important decision
  • Prayers for someone needing to move to safer environment
  • Sustaining member in extended cancer treatment
  • Prayers for husband with Parkinson’s & his wife, caregiver
  • Courage for one facing arterial procedure at Vanderbilt
  • God’s peace for three experiencing bereavements
  • Healing prayers for wife, recovering in rehab
  • Prayers for safe delivery of a new baby
  • Members asks for prayers for parents, both cancer victims

Praise to you, Lord of All, for your sustenance arrives at the moment it is most needed, assuaging the cares that weigh upon us. Thank you for heeding our longings and accepting our prayers that are beyond words, for we offer them in the name of Jesus, your Trusted Son and our Redeemer who taught us to pray in this way:

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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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of October 27, 2021

Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

This week, O Lord, our hearts turn to you as we remember all those saints whom you have called and who have walked among us throughout the years.  We remember your disciples who spent their time in this realm empowering the meek, encouraging the poor, and lifting up the forlorn.  We recall how they honored the neglected, respected the desires of the disadvantaged, and valued the least and the lost. For their wisdom and witness, we praise you!                 

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

And still in this era, your saints walk alongside us: bringing peace where there is discord, sowing goodness where there is distrust, spreading hope where despair has taken root.  In your own mystifying way, you call ordinary folk to carry out your ministry in extraordinary ways.  We pray you would sustain your saints who are in ministry this very day, and particularly these blessed ones who have made such a difference in our individual lives: . . . . . . . . . .  We know you as our Forever Guide, so empower us, that we also might shine as these who live in brightest faith even when tribulations descend.                                                                              

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Lord of the Dismayed, some days we are simply unable to take in all the pain that thrives in our world, communities, and in our own households.  We confess that our own faith grows dim when we consider all the misfortunes that are holding your people hostage.  Our own efforts seem so paltry, and we tire so easily. Draw close and make yourself known to those who are overwhelmed. Gaze upon those who are ill or frightened as they face a diagnosis, illness, surgery, poverty, or any sort of loss. And as our arms are too short to wrap around those whom you love, we pray you would embrace all those who believe they have been forgotten.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

As the apostle has written, we see through a glass darkly. We cannot comprehend your will and your ways; nor can we fathom the manner in which you are moving in our world.  But, Good Lord, we do know you hear the cries of our hearts, that you will never leave us comfortless, and that one day we shall see clearly. Until that day, we believe your grace covers all, and that you are attending each one who prays in your name.  Therefore, we bring these praises and pleas offered by members of the Church Street family:

  • Two families celebrate births of healthy baby daughters on Wednesday
  • Couple thankful for safe travel to Europe
  • Gratitude for the ministry of our church choirs
  • Member offers thanks for an unspoken miracle in her life
  • Thanksgiving for the peaceful death of an ill mother
  • Thanksgiving for healthcare workers who valiantly serve
  • Grateful for prayers – member’s back pain is vastly improved
  • Strength, wisdom for daughter, prime caregiver of aging father
  • Member thankful for recent visit of family members
  • Family grateful for prayers, daughter (Covid) continues to improve
  • Solace for members who mourn the loss of loved ones
  • Prayers for husband with Parkinson’s & his wife, caregiver
  • Healing for cherished father/husband hospitalized Monday
  • Courage for one facing difficult procedure at Vanderbilt
  • Proper diagnosis for one enduring fainting
  • Continued prayers for grandson (17) in cancer treatment
  • Courage, strength for one beginning chemo next week
  • Healing prayers for wife recovering from dangerous fall
  • Prayers for a young wife, soon to deliver first child 
  • Children of Grace School in Uganda, for a way forward 
  • Courage for one, extended chemotherapy, & devoted husband
  • Members asks for prayers for her parents, both cancer victims
  • Two sons in treatment for addiction

Grant this day, and each day ahead, Beloved Presence, that we might make a quiet space in our hearts for you. Join us in those silent moments, reminding us that you are ready to wipe away our sins, offering us the privilege of making a fresh start with each dawn. Wrap us now in the peace of your Spirit as we offer this prayer in the name of Christ, our Savior:

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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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of October 21, 2021

Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

Blessed are you, God Over Us, for each autumn morning you bring us a breakfast tray brimming with glories. Green leaves, veined with bronze and gold, wave their quiet hellos, using blue heaven as a pristine backdrop. Fluffy- tailed squirrels scurry about, carrying crunchy brown treasures released by heavy oaks, while sweet apple fragrance fills the air.  In this season you command our attention, Lord; from the crunch of twigs underfoot to the bracing breeze that stings the spine, you speak to us!  Forgive us, we pray, when we squander your offerings – favors from your heart that tell us we are beloved.  As the earth turns according to your divine will, turn our souls in your direction. May we be poised to discern your wooing from every stone and bit of stubble in the field.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer

Blessed are you, God Beside Us, for your step is in tandem with ours.  In these erratic times, however, we confess that we often feel insecure, ungrounded, and alone.  We remember your Son was also clothed in humanity, and that he experienced those dark nights of the soul, enduring so much more than we.  Yes, we believe, Lord, that the Resurrected Christ is our Hope and our Redeemer.  Yes, we believe; yet we need you to shore up our belief. When our dreams fade, our bodies let us down, when our loved ones pass on, when friends forget us, when society is increasingly splintered, steady our steps, we pray.  Guide us toward that place of peace within yourself. And there may we rest awhile until we are strong enough to walk along with you again, down that unwavering path of faith.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Blessed are you, God Around Us, for Jesus said he had flocks of which we are not aware. That truth alone reveals the immense breadth of your benevolence. It underscores the fact that neither this world, nor this universe, is the property of one nation or people, no matter how powerful. Might those flocks include those we pass every day, yet do not see?  Do they live in communities which we are afraid to visit? Are they the throngs who exist behind bars, hemmed in by hopelessness? Could they be those who are yet to be born? You are the God of no boundaries, whose plan encircles all time and space and whose mercies are immutable. Our questions are many and answers elude us. Nevertheless, may we live secure in the knowledge that those whom you love we are also called to love and to serve. By your grace, might we grow in respect and friendship with all, until that day when all flocks shall be gathered with you in your all-encompassing community.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Receive now, we pray, these praises and petitions from our church family, for you are always ready to listen to your children.  We sense your working among us and trust in your sustaining mercy.

  • Gratitude for prayers: member has received a new job
  • Praises for prayers – daughter with Covid now removed from ventilator
  • Family thankful for support during a father’s death
  • Thankful that husband with ALS has had a good week
  • Family celebrates a new daughter-in-law
  • Grateful that two family members are now vaccinated
  • Cancer sufferer is thankful for her wise physicians
  • Thanksgiving: grandson (17) dealing well with chemo
  • Member thankful hip surgery will not be required
  • Healing prayers for member who suffered injuries in a fall
  • Prayers for young mother adjusting to new medications
  • Courage & guidance for member beginning cancer treatment in Nov.
  • Children of Grace School in Uganda, for guidance, opportunities
  • Blessings for two young women in final weeks of pregnancy
  • Healing prayers for two sons in treatment for addiction
  • Healing prayers – father (92) suffering from Covid
  • Friend whose mother died last week
  • Easing of grief for 3 recently widowed
  • Mother in treatment for thyroid cancer; father with leukemia
  • God’s grace for three fathers suffering from Parkinson’s
  • Prayers for daughter burying her father this week
  • Healing for best friend: Aggressive cancer treatment
  • Recovery for cousin on ventilator

Blessed are you, O God With Us, in this season of splendor, we witness nature taking on its own work of pruning and nourishing the earth. Still, it is a time to plant that which will burst forth when spring arrives. Along with the tulip bulb, may we bury thoughtfulness and kindness, that they might spread their roots far and wide underneath the raven earth.  May we bury generosity, that it might permeate the soil along with the winter rain. And may we sow seeds of peace, that they would multiply, becoming extensions of your holy peace.  And when warm winds blow again, may all flourish, bringing honor to the One 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.

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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of October 6, 2021

Written by Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

O Author of All Our Days, our lives seem so scattered in this modern era, and we are quick to attach our lives to strings that others pull.  Go here! they say; Do that! they advise;  Follow me! they urge. And we confess that we frequently allow ourselves to be caught up in efforts that do not enrich our souls. Teach us, we pray, to listen more closely to the calling you so tenderly place in each of our hearts, to attend to your faint voice that whispers your will for us each day.  By your grace, help us live up to our commitment to Christ, and to realign our calendars, that we would find joy in the slackened pace, in your gift of the moment. As the apostle has said, What does it matter if we gain the world, if our hearts are not beating with the love of our Lord?  

In the liturgical year, the Church now finds itself in Ordinary Time, set apart from the high holy days. What better time to consider the mundane, the repetitive tasks of daily living – dusting and laundering, cooking and straightening, scouring and sweeping? In your great wisdom, O God of Harmony, you knew that if we performed these routine, ordinary chores, we might then become better stewards of our lives. For in ordering our households, companionship, creativity, learning and laughter, conversation and enjoyment might then have room to flourish. We remember our Savior who taught that every service performed with love, no matter how humble, will not be forgotten. Give us an openness of spirit, we pray, to once again discover both the joy and the importance of simple things.

God of Healing and Wholeness, we face the brokenness of our bodies, our spirits, and our relationships; and we confess that we do falter in our faith in this time of dread, disease, and dissension. Yes, some of our misfortunes we have brought upon ourselves; forgive our blindness, we pray.  Still other adversities stalk us through no fault of our own, and in our humanness, we search for explanations, when there are no explanations to be found.  As we are made in your image, O Divine One, you understand our pain and our perplexities; so come sit with us and linger awhile as we try to fashion a plan to move forward in faith.  Dispel our doubts, we pray, as we lift up the broken parts of ourselves to your healing. 

And hear also these praises and petitions that are offered by your people at Church Street. We know you as our refuge and strength in time of trouble; yet you have asked us not to give in to fear.  May it be so:

  • Gratitude for prayers: Aortic valve surgery successful
  • Thankfulness for life of a beloved husband
  • One celebrates a clear cancer scan
  • Bereaved member sends gratitude for support of church
  • ALS sufferer thankful for outpouring of financial help
  • Praises that knee surgery went smoothly
  • Member thankful for recent financial gift
  • Family grateful for God’s presence at death of father
  • Gratitude: Paralyzed grandson now able to feed himself
  • Homebound member thankful for supportive friends
  • One grateful for continued improvement following surgery
  • Pray for a family member in deep depression
  • A daughter who needs healing in her life
  • Relief & healing for very ill member hospitalized
  • Comfort for member whose brother died on Tuesday
  • College student and family grieving death of grandfather
  • Couple ask for prayers, tensions related to young son
  • Continued watchcare for young mothers-to-be
  • Healing for young family affected by addiction
  • Recovery for cousin on ventilator 
  • Courage and calm for one newly diagnosed with cancer
  • Cherished daughter in rehab, for recovery from Covid
  • Pray for ongoing progress of paralyzed grandson 
  • Healing for member, torn tendons in foot and ankle
  • Peace for best friend, aggressive cancer diagnosis

We thank you, O Redeemer, for the gift of your unfathomable love.  Grant that your loving power would sustain us as we work to re-order our lives in the days to come.  May we eschew the strong tugs of the world that lead to emptiness; but may embrace only those purposes which bring honor to you and to your Son, 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.

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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of September 29, 2021

Written by Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

Most Holy Lord, you are that sure foundation on which we stand.  Amid the apprehension and unpredictability of this present era, our lives would crumble if you had not planted us securely upon your rock that never fails.  Your scriptures and hymns, inspired by your Spirit, speak the words our hearts long to hear. We stand grateful for loved ones who have buoyed us when our souls were ragged, for our church family which offers a place of belonging.  We believers are so often separated by distance due to the deadly virus, but we are not separated from our firm faith in your saving love, our commitment to your church, and our trust in each other.    

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

The words you first spoke through your prophet Isaiah, “Fear not, for I am with you…” have reverberated through the ages, through many voices, giving us strength to carry on.  Save us, we pray, from the hatred that blinds us and the fear that leaves us cringing and dismayed.  We confess that we have been quick to judge, quick to criticize, quick to retaliate. By your omnipotent hand, make us brave enough to confront the forces of prejudice and anger within ourselves, then turn our warring chants into a doxology of hope. And in witnessing our assurance, may others absorb your holy peace and hope.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Our lives are replete with personal stories of your saving deliverance, yet we know we are fragile mortals who require your healing and renewal.  We cannot know the outcome of our prayers, but we trust that when we turn everything over to you, O Bedrock of our Faith, your grace shall be sufficient. So many across our globe are mired in misfortune and are awaiting your redemption.  Comfort and carry all the afflicted in their hour of sorrow, we pray, and also attend to these concerns and joys that are uppermost in the hearts of your people of Church Street:

  • Member thankful, recovering from shingles
  • Member appreciates church support during his prolonged illness
  • Family celebrates the birth of a baby girl on Monday
  • Hospital workers who push through their weariness to bring healing
  • Gratitude: tests revealed no evidence of a stroke
  • Thankful for safe travel and family vacation this week
  • Gratitude: A husband’s illness was quickly diagnosed
  • Homebound member celebrates Rejoice! Ministry
  • Recovery for cousin on ventilator at Parkwest
  • Courage and healing for mother with breast cancer
  • Please pray for all relatives recovering from Covid
  • Prayers for patience: Surgery postponed for one awaiting aortic valve replacement
  • Recovery for elderly member with shingles
  • Continued prayers for ongoing progress of paralyzed grandson
  • Member having breast biopsy on Monday 
  • Cousin and wife recovering from injuries in auto crash on Sunday
  • Prayers for correct diagnosis for ill wife
  • Upholding cherished husband nearing death and solace for his wife 
  • Healing for member, torn tendons in foot and ankle
  • Healing mercies for young friend in early stages of ALS
  • Two families whose loved ones have died of Covid

Knowing that you have heard and accepted our prayers, our souls take their rest in you, All-Faithful One.  Steel us through your grace, that we may remain faithful to the end. And by your mercy, grant that we might grow in the resolve to serve only that once-rejected Cornerstone, our Savior, Christ 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.

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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of September 22, 2021

Written by Rev. Jan Buxton Wade

With a rich red hue encircling yesterday’s date, the calendar announced the beginning of autumn.  Oh yes, Good Lord, we have received those gentle hints you have sent our way: the shortening of days, the cool air of the misty morn, and raindrops that quench the thirst of the overworked soil.  As your good earth prepares to rest in peace, help us to set aside those dried-up mistakes and tensions that infected us throughout the summer months.  Sweep away those careless words and unhealthy deeds that marred our long strand of warmer days; may they wither away, useless as they are, to be counted as debris for your compost.  But by your mercy, we pray, store up any seeds of hope or kindness we may have sown along the way, that in some small manner, you may find them worthy of your harvest of grace.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

All praise to you, God of the Golden Leaf, for you have honored us with life itself!  The gleanings from the field bespeak the abundance we have been given – far more than we could ever ask or imagine!  You know our every need and hasten to provide what is lacking in our lives. And because of your outpouring, we are reminded of our own poverty, knowing that every gift comes from your generous heart. Even in our most unsettling days, you come with your blessed presence, strewing gifts upon our path.  Hear us now as we whisper our gratitude for these particular mercies you have brought to fruition in our individual lives:  . . . . . . . . . .  As long as we have breath, may we sing our praise to our Life-giving Friend.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Compassionate One, too frequently we forget that you have gathered us together as one human family.  And though we are spread far and wide across the planet, you long for us to work for the good of all our brothers and sisters. We may not know each by name, but their eyes of want follow us at every turn. Empty hands reach out to us for food; shrunken bodies tell the story of deprivation and disease; orphans search for parents amid the debris of war; drug-dazed victims stagger along our streets, bereft of hope. We pray for these in this hour, Lord; yet know that thousands already are working at your behest to alleviate the immeasurable pain in our world.  Upon these selfless ones, whose names we do not know, may your blessings rest.  

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

It is the old prophet Isaiah who reminds us that the bruised reed you will not break, but will strengthen and sustain.  We have experienced your strength indeed, O Lord, in our own times of trial.  And as you have upheld us, we count you as our constant counsel, who hears our cries, who knows our angst, and who answers us through the silent movement of the Spirit.  Move among us, Lord, and especially among your people of Church Street who offer these heartfelt prayers:

  • Family thankful for prayers: husband’s surgery at Vanderbilt successful
  • Prayers appreciated: daughter critically ill with Covid is showing improvement – please continue healing prayers
  • Praises for a safe & lengthy visit with old friends in Michigan
  • Gratitude for brave hospital & medical personnel
  • Thanksgiving for a brother’s engagement
  • One gives thanks that surgery will not be required for an injury
  • Daughter offers gratitude for her father’s peaceful death
  • Family appreciates messages of comfort during a bereavement
  • Offering thanks for our church’s music program
  • Praises for the miracle of healing of friend with Covid
  • Please continued prayers for loved ones with Covid
  • Dear friend awaiting aortic valve replacement
  • Healing of two members suffering from shingles
  • Prayers for friend: awaiting tests for return of cancer
  • Cherished husband in hospice, prayers for comfort & blessing
  • Uncle in chemo treatment for pancreatic cancer
  • Safety for a family traveling this week
  • Prayers for a Sunday School Class holding together during Covid
  • Prayers for a procedure to relieve a member’s intense pain
  • Member undergoing tests this week for possible stroke
  • Two families whose loved ones have died of Covid
  • Increased strength for paralyzed grandson
  • Cousin with lung distress, Covid complications

Bind us together, we pray, for we are your children at every season, and grant peace to those who are closest to our hearts. May your grace and generosity shine in our deeds, that others may marvel at the God we serve.  And may your words of kindness and forgiveness echo in our own voices, always pointing to love eternal, as realized in the life of our Savior, 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.

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Weekly Prayers for the Church Street Family

Week of September 15, 2021

Written by Rev. Tim Best

Creator of heaven and earth, like the original disciples, we continue to wrestle with the calling of Christ. We are eager to name Jesus as our Messiah, the Savior, and King, but it is revealed to us that the path where Jesus leads us is filled with sacrifice, loss and suffering love. We seek the protection of power and the renown of prestige. Our hearts brim with enthusiasm to follow Jesus when we believe his ways will grant us power and influence. Forgive us when our hearts are bent inwards and our service is for self and not others. May your Holy Spirit abide within our church family and lead us into humble obedience. 

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for all those connected to Church Street United Methodist Church. Empower and guide this community that we would know Jesus within our community and proclaim him in the world.   Grant that we might answer the invitation to follow Jesus. We pray for all those whose obedience to you has resulted in suffering. Give us confidence in Christ’s promises that we would boldly pick up our crosses and follow him. Comfort the persecuted and instruct us in the care and support of one another.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who do not share the faith of the church. When our institutions and hierarchies become stumbling blocks for others, pluck out that which is blinding us to faithful living. Make your mercy and grace known to those who feel far from your love; and send your disciples into the midst of the world and away from the comforts that shelter us from following Jesus. 

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for all those who suffer, are alone, or are in any kind of trouble. Christ’s willingness to suffer is a sign of his commitment to the world. Christ entered the suffering of the world out of love for all that which God has made. May our hearts be softened that we, too, may encounter suffering ourselves, so that God’s love might be made known. We pray for the sick, the dying, the scared, the angry, the disappointed, the oppressed, and those whose suffering is hidden. 

And to these we add our prayers from the Church Street family.  We rejoice at the goodness you are bringing into our lives, and ask that you bend close to receive these special pleas voiced by your children:

  • Family celebrates a long-awaited pregnancy
  • Family grateful for a peaceful death for ill father
  • Gratitude for a friend’s Christian witness in spite of great suffering
  • Family gives thanks for a happy weekend wedding
  • Thanksgiving: 3 beautiful babies baptized Sunday
  • One thankful for prayers for safe travel – all well
  • Prayers appreciated, infant’s RSV now clear
  • Two families thankful for healing from Covid
  • ALS sufferer sends thanks for church support
  • Thankful for prayers – aunt with internal bleeding recovered
  • Prayers appreciated- spinal procedure went smoothly
  • Thanksgiving for ministry of church greeters & ushers
  • Gratitude for special Afghan family who reached safety in Pakistan
  • Gratitude for healthcare workers serving at great risk on our behalf
  • Prayers for safety and healing for husband- surgery Friday
  • Cherished husband ill at home – for recovery
  • Uncle with pancreatic cancer, beginning treatment
  • Beloved daughter nearing death
  • Prayers for one seeking financial stability & easing of depression
  • Easing of back pain for faithful church worker 
  • Bereaved family, miscarriage after 5-month pregnancy
  • Increased strength for paralyzed grandson
  • Father suffering from depression
  • For an adult son to overcome addiction
  • A young pastor in another church under great stress
  • Upholding 2 sisters, caregivers for 3 infirm relatives
  • Watch-care over three young pregnant women
  • Cousin with lung distress, Covid complications
  • Prayers for healing of our nation’s divisiveness

May your mercy be upon the nations. We remember this weekend the loss and pain of one horrific event that reshaped our world twenty years ago. We pray for the leaders of nations and peoples, that your peace may transform the world. We pray for all those who have known war and violence. We pray for our own leaders, for the president, the governor, the county and city mayors, all elected officials and those they appoint. 

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Let us hold fast to blessed hope of your kingdom. May we be willing to lose all else for the sake of gaining Christ. Let our hopes be grounded in the vision that Christ cast in the prayer which he taught us, as we join together, saying: 

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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