A moment of contemplation for yourself or on behalf of others on everything from the life-altering to the mundane.


Prayer: A conversation with The Higher Other who lives within each of us. An invitation to vent, to re-think, to ask, and to rest.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Prayers of the People: Pearls and Mustard, 7th Sunday after Pentecost

for July 27, 2014, 7th Sunday after Pentecost, Readings: Gen 29: 15-28; Ps 105: 1-11, 44-45; Romans 8:26-39; Mt 13:31-52


         When morning came, there was Leah! So Jacob said to Laban, 'What is this you have done to me? I served you for Rachel, didn't I? Why have you deceived me?' 
                                                                                                         [Gen 29:25 NIV]

     The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed...like yeast...like treasure hidden in a field...[and] like [a pearl] of great value...     [Matthew 13:31, 33, 44, 45 NIV]

         A Taste of Creation this week - 
the deceiver is deceived, and there is more sibling rivalry and jealousy. In using imperfect people to show us to ourselves, we also see that we are still counted among all those that God loves, regardless of our flaws. 
       Jesus lets us know there is something for everyone in God's Kingdom whether we are planting the tiny mustard seeds to grow into large trees that birds will flock to, mixing yeast with flour to expand the dough, finding buried treasure in the field, or discovering a pearl so perfect that we sell all we own to buy it. 
        One message is that there is no perfection in humanity but our smallest efforts can grow and yield a large return. All we have to do is recognize that God is always here, we just have to look, and sometimes that requires a little digging. We have to work pretty hard to be separated from the love of God through Jesus, even with all of our faults. So even when we start small, all that we do will expand, and we'll be able to achieve the greatest possible reward. After all, If God is for us, who can be against us? [Romans 8:31b]   Only us.

LET US, GOD’S PEOPLE, PRAY

Leader:  ~ O God of Strength and Presence, the hidden gems in Your Creation:  the smallest seeds yielding the largest trees, the yeast that expands the dough, the treasure for which we buy the field, are all markers of Your bountiful love that begins in small ways and fills our souls beyond measure.  Catch us in Your net, keep us worthy, and gather us into the good basket of Your bountiful harvest.

                                Spirit of God, search our hearts, know our minds
RESPONSE:     Help us, O Lord, in our weakness

~ O God of Strength and Presence, enjoin the political leaders of this world, our country, and our community, to stop the wars, provide the basic necessities for Your neediest people, and live into the ethics of acting on what is best for all whom they govern, not merely some. We pray especially for Barack, our President; Jack, our Governor; Tom, our County Executive; and Dennis, our mayor.

                            Spirit of God, search our hearts, know our minds
                            Help us, O Lord, in our weakness

~ O God of Strength and Presence, ease the burden of illness, injury, or affliction for those who suffer, and bring relief to those who give them care.  We pray especially for:

                            Spirit of God, search our hearts, know our minds
                            Help us, O Lord, in our weakness

~ O God of Strength and Presence, give shelter to those who are weary with grief, and let those we have lost, find themselves now shining in the sun of Your covenant, nesting in Your Tree of Eternal Life. We pray especially for:

                            Spirit of God, search our hearts, know our minds
                            Help us, O Lord, in our weakness

~ O God of Strength and Presence, we pause in this moment to offer You our other heartfelt intentions and petitions, silently or aloud…..

                            Spirit of God, search our hearts, know our minds
                            Help us, O Lord, in our weakness

~ O God of Strength and Presence, for those who You and we have called upon to lead us in Your church, bestow the gift of grace-filled respite and the reminder that, “We know that all things work together for good, for those who love God...” We pray especially for: Katharine, our Presiding Bishop; Wayne, our own Bishop; David, our rector; Lloyd, our Rector Emeritus; and Peter, our Associate Priest.

                            Spirit of God, search our hearts, know our minds
                            Help us, O Lord, in our weakness


The Celebrant adds: O God of Abraham and Sarah; Jacob, Rebekah and Leah; David, and Judas, to fulfill Your covenant, You use imperfect people who argue, are jealous, greedy, and disobey Your Law, so that we might see ourselves among those You love. Guide us to remember that You are always for us and nothing but our own selfishness will separate us from the love of Christ.  We ask Your continued blessing through Jesus, our Redeemer and the Holy Spirit, our Sanctifier who fill the heavens with You as One God, now and forever. Amen.



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