“God of multitudes, ruler of the universe: Look with favor upon Christ’s flock in this place.
Cause our congregation to be an effective witness to your love and power.
To this end, banish from us pettiness and rivalry,
speaking ill of one another, seeking to serve ourselves rather than you.
Guide the leaders of the congregation, both lay and ordained,
that in turn they may guide us also into your ways.
Bind us together by your love and cause us to know ourselves to be a people called out of darkness
into your marvelous light.
This we ask through Christ who himself is head of the church. Amen”
(A Wesleyan Way of Prayer)
“Seek God’s kingdom and all your other needs will be met as well.” Luke 12:31
“Sometimes God is so touched by what he sees that he gives us what we need and not simply that for which we ask. It’s a good thing. For who would have ever thought to ask God for what he gives? Which of us would have dared to say: ‘God, would you please hang yourself on a tool of torture as a substitution for every mistake I have ever committed?’ And then have the audacity to add: ‘And after you forgive me, could you prepare me a place in your house to live forever?’ Jesus already knows the cost of grace. He already knows the price of forgiveness. But he offers it anyway. Love burst his heart.”
— Max Lucado
“A pastor in the midst of a Bible study sharing time, wanted to share but worried: ‘What would they think of their pastor?’ Yet I knew the moment was right. I mustered the courage and said, ‘I am spiritually tired. The pastoral ministry is taking a toll on me.'”
“Another member of the group responded, ‘Pastor, I have been concerned about your well-being.'”
“Another added, ‘We’re here to help you.'”
“At the end of the meeting they gathered around and prayed for me. I have been in many groups but this one was really special for me. The last thing I expected was that these people who I was supposedly leading, would deepen my faith through their unconditional love and care for me.”
— Pablo Diaz
“We humans inhabit a mere speck of a planet in the outer suburbs of a spiral galaxy that is only one of about a million million such galaxies in the observable universe but the New Testament insists that what happens among us here will, in fact, help determine the future of that universe. Paul is emphatic: ‘The whole creation is on tiptoe to see the wonderful sight of the sons of God coming into their own.” Natural creation, ‘groaning’ in travail and decay, can only be set free by the transformation of human beings.”
— Philip Yancey
Eternal God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
You have called us to be spiritual leaders of your body this church;
Help us to surrender our hearts and minds to you;
To humbly seek your voice;
To boldly do your will;
To compassionately share your love;
To faithfully be your servants;
And to reverently lead your people.
Bless all that we do,
So that we can do what you bless.
In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.
(From Becoming A Blessed Church by N. Graham Standiish)