Sep 12, 2013

Opening Prayer: Presence and Absence

Here’s a prayer of approach inspired, in part, by Psalm 22:1 and Habakkuk 1: 1-4.  It was written by Rev. John Harvey, and posted on Starters for Sunday.

Prayer of Approach
(inspired by Psalm 22:1, Habakkuk 1: 1-4)

Living God,
we come to you now,
in wonder.
We have heard of your works -
as Creator, Upholder, In-dweller,
Lover of all –
and we have known you
in our own times,
in our own lives,
in the lives of our neighbours.
Before the mystery
of your presence all around
and within,
it is right for us to be silent,
and to offer thanks and praise.

Optional sung response, like “Be still and know that I am God.”

But, living God,
we also come to you
in anger and despair.
We look out,
and see children dying of hunger,
see nations torn apart by war,
see greed and corruption blighting
the lives of millions.
And we look within,
and see our complicity in much of this,
see our compromised lives,
see our broken hearts,
our broken promises;
and before the mystery of evil rampant
and injustice unpunished,
we ask, “Where were you, God,
when all this went so wrong?”;
hear us as lift our voices to you
and cry
“O God, why have you abandoned us?”
In silence, then,
before the mystery
both of your presence and of your absence,
we wait upon you now.

Optional sung response, like “Be still and know that I am God.”

~ written by Rev. John Harvey, and posted on the Church of Scotland’s Starters for Sunday website. http://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/