Pastoral Prayer: Lent 1 B

Here’s a prayer for the first Sunday of Lent.  It was written by Isaac, a Mennonite Pastor.

Pastoral Prayer for Lent
(Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:9-15, Luke 4:1-13)

Lord God, today is the first Sunday of Lent, a season of repentance, of self-examination, of silence and waiting for the leading of your Holy Spirit. Through your Spirit you lead us into the temptations of Jesus, forty days in the wilderness, where our lives are laid bare, and we come face to face with our desires for power—power over our lives and the lives of our friends and enemies and maybe even power over you.

Open us to your grace and mercy, your love and provision, as we confront the devil’s temptations, the demons that try to run our world and our lives. Give us the power of your Son that we may also throw off the insidious powers of sin—the forces of selfishness and pride, the forces that keep us from confronting the truth about our lives and the world.

During this season of Lent, shatter our illusions, save us from ourselves, and open us to the new life of your Holy Spirit—a life of faith, hope, and love. As we let your Spirit lead us into repentance, may we discover the goodness and fullness of life in your kingdom of peace. In the words of Psalmist, may we find in your presence a refuge, a dwelling place, a place of rest (Ps. 91).

May we also resist the temptation to find our rest in places that muffle the cries of injustice—the desperation of the needy, the anger of the wronged, and the despair of the hopeless. May those voices echo in our Lenten silence, for the call of your Spirit also speaks through those voices. As the apostle Paul says, your word is near us, on our lips and in our hearts (Romans 10). May we use this season of Lent to empty ourselves of all that makes us deaf to that word, the Word of God, Jesus Christ, who is already on our lips and in our hearts.

— written by Isaac, a Mennonite pastor.  Posted on his blog, Rusty Parts.