Sep 25, 2011

Prayers of the People: Psalm 19, Exodus 20

Here’s a possible prayer of intercession based on some of the scripture texts for Proper 22A (Ordinary 27A): Exodus 20:1-20 (where God gives the Ten Commandments); Psalm 19 (a hymn of praise for the self-revelation of God in the created order and in the Law); Philippians 4:4-14 (where Paul writes about the joy of knowing and serving Christ).

Since two of those texts are also the texts for Lent 3 B (March 11, 2012), it would also be suitable for that day. 
Feel free to revise this prayer to suit your needs.

Prayer of Intercession

Liberating God,
in love You have set us free:
    free from slavery to sin and self,
    free to know and love You,
    free to follow and serve You.

We praise You for Your faithful love toward us,
and for the many ways You have demonstrated that love to us.
We see Your love in the natural world around us—
   in the sky and trees and rivers.
We see Your love in the gift of Your commandments—
   the rules for living that guide us into right relationship with You,
   and with the people around us.
And we see Your love in Jesus Christ,
   who lived and died to bring us life.

Because we have experienced Your love,
we come before You with confidence,
bringing our needs and the needs of our world.
God, in your unfailing love, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who live surrounded by violence—
whether from war or political unrest, crime or domestic abuse.
We pray for those who have been victims of violent crime,
and for those whose loved ones have been injured or murdered.
God, in your unfailing love, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who find themselves involved in crime,
whether by choice or through coercion;
those caught up into gangs or prostitution,
those who have turned to crime to pay for their addictions,
those who are imprisoned.
God, in your unfailing love, hear our prayer.

We pray for our homes and families:
for parents juggling the responsibilities of work and family,
for husbands and wives whose marriages are breaking down,
for children chafing under parental authority or expectations,
for men and women caught up in adultery or adulterous thoughts.
God, in your unfailing love, hear our prayer.

We pray for the many people in our world who do not yet know You
and have not experienced the new life that comes from knowing Christ Jesus;
who continue to search for purpose and meaning.
God, in your unfailing love, hear our prayer.

Merciful God,
give us strength and courage to keep Your commandments,
    to live in faithful obedience to Your will.
Guard our hearts and minds from all that might distract us
    from living out our commitment to You.
Help us to find our true worth in knowing You more fully,
    and serving You more faithfully.

In the name of Jesus Christ, our Cornerstone. Amen.