Category Archives: Worship

Worship prayers for 06/28/15 ~ Spiritual blindness

Good morning and happy Lord’s Day.

The sermon text for this morning is Mark 10:46-52. This is Jesus’ encounter with blind Bartimaeus on the road from Jericho to Jerusalem. This is the last healing story of this Gospel as we head into chapter 11 with the Triumphal entry into Jerusalem (what we call Holy Week). My focus will be on spiritual blindness and the Church’s call to seek the blind with the Gospel of Jesus Christ; for when one calls out to Jesus in faith, he will stop, as he did for Bartimaeus. So the prayers are written with that theme in mind.

May your Lord’s Day be blessed as you worship our awesome God.

Let’s pray…

Opening Prayer
God of Hope, in a world filled with spiritual blindness, we come looking for Your guiding hand; seeking Your forgiveness; seeking Your Truth. For You are God almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
You are our King.
You are our Life.
You are our Light.
And so we plead with the words of the blind Bartimaeus, Lord, have mercy on us. We humbly beseech You to stop and turn to us as Jesus did on that Jericho road.
Receive our worship.
Receive our praise.
Receive our thanks.
Restore our sight.
For You are worthy and thus we are worthy of judgment, but have mercy upon us as You heal our blindness and make us so bold that our way becomes the way of Jesus. So here we are. May our worship be pleasing to Your ears, in the name of Jesus we pray, Amen.

Prayer before Preaching
Mighty God, our great Physician, You are the opener of eyes, the healer of faith and the giver of hope. Through Jesus Christ You heard the call of the blind man and did for him what he had asked through faith, that You may be glorified. You then sent him on his way; healed and redeemed. And so we gather here on this dusty road of life as blind beggars; seeking Your Word and healing touch. May all who hear Your Word cast off all that would hinder their coming to You and may they run with haste to get a taste of Your glorious Word. So I humbly ask that You would send Your Holy Spirit to open our eyes that we may proclaim the glories of Your awesome name. Heal all the ails us, not according to our will but may Your will be done. Drive away despair. Bury our sin. Grant us hope through Jesus Christ our risen Savior, Amen.

Offering Prayer
Holy Father; giver of life, nothing we give compares to what You have done for us through Jesus Christ, but it is not about trying to out give you but rather express our thanks through our worship. So receive these gifts collected this morning as our worship to You for the advancement of Your Kingdom, and in turn, may You continue to bless us that we may bless others; for this ministry is not ours but Yours. Let our lives be a living worship service unto Your glory as we serve our neighbors in love. Through Christ Jesus our Lord we pray, Amen.

Benediction
As Jesus opened the eyes of the blind,
may your eyes be opened to the love and mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ.
May you see your lives as fleeting in this world but held secure in the arms of God.
May you see the plight of your neighbor and reach out with the love of our Lord.
May you see the strength of our awesome God as your strength.
May you see the spiritual blindness in this world as your calling to live boldly for God.
And may you see the way of Jesus as your way.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen

Worship prayers for 6/21/15 ~ Happy Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day to fathers of all kinds as God, our heavenly Father, continues to bless and use you for His glory.

I also pray for those affected by the tragedy in Charleston, SC. On Father’s Day (or any day for that matter) we shouldn’t have to deal with something like this hanging over us. But I praise God that Jesus was found hanging on a cross for sinners that His Kingdom may be established, and thus sin and evil ultimately stamped out. So on this Father’s Day, cling to that hope as we praise and worship our heavenly Father.

So with that I commend to you these worship prayers/blessings prepared for today. May God be glorified.

Opening Prayer
Holy God, mighty King, loving Father, we come before You in holy awe; for there is no other response that is close to being worthy. We also come before You in fear and grief and sadness and confusion and anger and a myriad of other emotions we dare not name; but ones You know very well. We hold close to our hearts those who died in the Charleston shooting along with their friends and family members and others who are intimately connected to this tragedy. And today we especially remember those who are mourning the death of a father. We struggle to make sense of things; why in a house of prayer did this happen; why these people; why this event; why, oh God, why? There are so many questions; so many conflicting emotions. But You are a God of peace in a world that is anything but peaceful. So I ask that Your peace may be what wins the day. Grant faith to make us witnesses of Your love in this world and may our lives be a living worship service that brings You glory each and everyday. Bring healing. Build hope. Erase hate. Ignite Revival. Draw people together as Your bring Your glorious Kingdom. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Prayers of Intercession
…For The City of Charleston, SC as they mourn. It’s hard to imagine the feelings these people are experiencing. So instead of us trying to imagine and thus minimizing their grief, grant us empathy that we may mourn with our brothers and sisters in Christ and then work to be grace-filled witnesses in this world that Your Spirit may affect a world-wide, heart-changing revival. Lord in Your mercy…

Father’s Day prayer (based on Tweets from my colleague @rev_david)
We give thanks for loving wonderful fathers, who have given their children so many invaluable gifts.
We pray for all those whose fathers have died, who grieve on this day; celebrating their father in his absence.
We pray for fathers who have made the difficult and loving decision to give a child up for adoption.
We pray for those who were given abuse and heartbreak by the very ones called to love them.
We pray for all who are spending this Father’s Day in a hospital bed or at a hospital bedside.
We pray for the fathers of children with special needs and chronic illness, who know anxiety and exhaustion better than most.
We pray for those who struggle with infertility, whose desire to share parental love is met with frustration.
We weep with fathers who have born the silent grief of stillbirth or miscarriage.
We weep with every father who has had to bear the unimaginable burden of burying a child.
For men who choose to remain without biological children, sharing love with the world, we give thanks.
For far too often overlooked stepfathers, we give much needed thanks.
For uncles and godfathers and neighbors, who share fatherly love with so many children, we give thanks.
We give thanks for those who have answered the call to fatherhood through adoption and foster parenting, who model the adoptive love of God.
We pray for new fathers, with bleary eyes and hope for the future, welcoming new life into the world.
We pray for all men; for showing fatherly love to children of all ages; serving as an example of Your Fatherly love, oh God.
Lord in Your mercy…

Offering Prayer
Father God, You offered Your life that we may live. We therefore offer these meager gifts in response to the enormous gift of eternal life that we have through faith in Jesus Christ; knowing that we can never give enough to match Your gracious love. So may we continue to offer You our lives in faithful witness to others that our living offerings may bring You glory. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Benediction
May you be blessed to be a blessing to others.
May you be strengthened that you may strengthen others.
May you know God through Christ Jesus so well that others see Him in you.
May your light shine bright that others are blinded by His love.
May you show grace and mercy and love that hate and racism are stamped out.
And may the peace that surpasses all understanding sustain you through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

Worship Prayers for 06/14/15 ~ Sinners/Saints

Good morning sinners/saints. Once again it is my joy to share with you the prayers that have been prepared for worship this morning. Use them as you may to the glory of our awesome God.

Opening Prayer
Holy God, to come before Your throne in worship brings a sense of awe and holy fear; for we are sinners; stained, spotted, wrinkled and riddled with uncleanliness. We are unworthy to even glance in Your direction to soak in just a tiny morsel of Your holy beauty. We are unworthy to even utter Your holy name in a desperate cry for help. But You, oh God, do not turn us away; but rather receive us in Agape love. And as we crawl to you and fall at Your feet, You lift us up through faith in Your only Son, Jesus; our Redeemer and Savior and Lover of our souls. And therefore what a joy it is to gather as Your children and praise Your awesome and holy name. So receive our praise and thanks, and fill us with Your Spirit as we lay our very lives at Your feet. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Prayer before Preaching
Awesome God, mighty King, Your Word is too deep for our feeble minds to probe. Your Word is too wide for our limited understanding to navigate. You Word is too weighty for our weak faith to bare. Who can handle such an awesome Word without being crushed under the weight of its judgment? But we are not crushed for Your Word gives life to those who would receive it through Jesus Christ. So I ask that you would send Your Holy Spirit, now, so that as I bask in Your Word this morning, I may be able to impart Your Way, Truth and Life to the sinners here gathered; that they may see themselves as saints through faith in Your Son, Jesus Christ. Convict my heart and humble me in Your presence. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Post-communion Blessing
Now may the body and blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ embolden your words and deeds as you live as forgiven sinners; saved by grace through faith, and proclaim the life and death of Jesus to the glory of God our Father. Amen.

Prayer after Communion/Closing Prayer
[Charles Spurgeon]
We cry to Thee this morning for the preservation of Thy church in the world, and especially for her purity. Oh Father, keep us, we beseech Thee, with all keeping, that the Evil one touch us not. We shall be tempted, but let him not prevail against us. In a thousand ways he will lay snares for our feel, but, deliver us as a bird from the snare of the fowler. May the snare be broken that we may escape and thus bring glory to Your holy name. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Now may the Father of our Lord, Jesus Christ, strengthen you for every good work; keeping you humble so that glory may always be to God. Blessings to you this day and always.

The Pastor -|—

Confession/Absolution ~ Hate Evil

The beauty of Charles Spurgeon’s faith, as expressed in his words, is something that never ceases to touch my heart and lead me deeper into God’s arms. I have enjoyed reading his sermons and taking a peak at his heart through some devotional reading.

This morning’s devotion was titled, Ye that love the Lord hate evil. Beautiful words that talk about the ugliness of sin in our lives and therefore the admonition to flee from it and hate it. So I took  some of these words (the ones italicized) and wrote a Confession/Absolution litany for worship this morning. Below is the product of the Spirit’s inspiration this morning. Feel free to use this as you will for the glory of God.


Confession
In the words of Charles Spurgeon ~ Thou hast good reason to “hate evil,” for only consider what harm it has already wrought thee. Oh, what a world of mischief sin has brought into thy heart! Sin blinded thee so that thou couldst not see the beauty of the Saviour; it made thee deaf so that thou couldst not hear the Redeemer’s tender invitations. Sin turned thy feet into the way of death, and poured poison into the very fountain of thy being; it tainted thy heart, and made it “deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.”

My friends, forgiveness is at the heart of the Gospel, but to get there we first must admit and confess our sinfulness. Nothing is hidden from God so don’t even try, for we are indeed wicked. But also don’t be afraid but rather boldly go to our heavenly Father through faith in Jesus; confessing Your sins.

[Silent prayer and confession]

Holy God, the ugliness of sin draws us away from You. It stains our souls and causes us to run to that which is evil. But in the name of Jesus Christ we run to You with our confessions; seeking to be washed in the blood of the lamb. Make us whole again that our eyes may see Your awesome beauty. It’s in the name of Jesus Christ, our risen Lord and Savior I pray, Amen.

Absolution
Jesus Christ was given to die for you that your sins would be forgiven. So as a called and ordained minister of the Church of Christ and by his authority, I therefore boldly and confidently announce to you the complete forgiveness of all your sins in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. So, Therefore “hate evil,” O Christians, unless you desire trouble. If you would strew your path with thorns, and plant nettles in your death-pillow, then neglect to “hate evil:” but if you would live a happy life, and die a peaceful death, then walk in all the ways of holiness, hating evil, even unto the end. If you truly love your Saviour, and would honour him, then “hate evil.” We know of no cure for the love of evil in a Christian like abundant communion with the Lord Jesus. Dwell much with him, and it is impossible for you to be at peace with sin.


May God bless your day as you live as forgiven sinners.

All praise be to God!

The Pastor -|—

Worship prayers ~ God’s Awesome Kingdom

Grace, peace and love to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.

Below are the prayers I wrote for worship for Sunday, June 7. The text for preaching is Mark 10:23-31; talking about entry into the Kingdom of God. This is something that is impossible for man but not for God; for anything is possible with God.

And so I commend these prayers to you for the glory of God.

Opening prayer
Holy God, we anxiously await the arrival of Your glorious Kingdom as it comes in power and might; a Kingdom where Your children, through faith in Jesus, will reside in eternal joy. A Kingdom where death and sin are not even a distant memory. A Kingdom where You reign eternal. And so in the mean time we look with longing eyes for the consumption of Your glory. We listen with attentive ears for the life saving Gospel. And we worship You with thankful hearts. Receive our praise and hear our prayers as we fall at Your feet in humble submission. Turn not Your servants away but bring us close that we may be filled with Your love. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Prayer before preaching
Holy God, loving Father, Your Word tells us that if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. And so I humbly ask that You may send Your Holy Spirit to enliven the words that I speak; the words of Good News of Jesus Christ, that those words may create or strengthen faith in those who are hearing. And as Your Word brings life to Your children may they be so bold to speak words of life to one another; giving You the glory. And so guide now, your servants, into Your Word and reveal to us the glory of Your Kingdom. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Post-Communion blessing
May the body and blood of Christ strengthen your faith and make you so bold to live as forgiven sinners; proclaiming the Kingdom of God until he comes again. Amen.

Prayer after Holy Communion
Holy God, you are mighty to save; and through Jesus Christ you have announced Your Kingdom. May You grant Your Holy Spirit to establish Your Kingdom in Your children now and send us forth to boldly proclaim the death and resurrection of Your Son and our Lord. In Jesus name I pray, Amen

Benediction (from “Benedictions: A Pocket Resource” by Robert Vasholz)
May the Lord grant you to see where you are lacking, that you might have everything;
May the Lord grant you vision of you poverty, that you might be rich beyond measure;
May the Lord show you that you are destitute so that you may be filled with the fullness of His supply.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

May God bless you as you bring Your worship to God as a thank offering for the blessings God has already bestowed upon you.

The Pastor -|—

Sunday Worship Prayers ~ God’s Kingdom

The preaching text for Sunday is Mark 10:17-31; the rich young man asking Jesus about what he needs to do to inherit eternal life. So the prayers today are Kingdom focused. Use them as you see fit that God may be glorified.

Opening prayer
It is our joy to enter this place of worship this morning. It is our joy to come into this place with our brothers and sisters in Christ to praise Your holy name. It is our joy to come into Your presence to worship You. And as we enter this time of worship, dismantle the walls of our kingdoms, that we have built, and grant us the faith to embrace Your Kingdom, oh God, through Christ Jesus our Lord. May we see Your beauty and flee from our filth. May we see Your holiness and flee from our sin. May we see Your power and flee from Satan. May we see Your love and flee from our selfishness. Holy Father, loving God, mighty King, establish us in Your Kingdom now, through the blood of Jesus, and cleanse us from all impurities. Receive our praise and hear our prayers as we joyfully assemble as Your beloved children. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Prayer before preaching
It’s Your Kingdom I desire, oh God. It’s Your salvation I seek.
It’s Your Kingdom I long for, oh God. It’s Your mercy I need.
It’s Your Kingdom I want, oh God. It’s Your love to which I cling.
And because it is all about Your Kingdom, I desire, seek and need Your Holy Spirit. I need the wisdom that only comes from You. I need Your strength through which I can truly be bold. I need Your Words through which faith and life are created. May Your will be done as I faithfully engage Your most holy Word. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

May God bless your day as you enjoy the hope of the resurrection; looking forward to eternity in God’s glorious Kingdom.

The Pastor -|—

Prayer Before Preaching ~ Running Wild

In preparation for preaching on Pentecost Sunday and on Mark 10:13-16.

Holy God, loving Father, mighty King, I humbly ask for Your Holy Spirit to be given as we hear Your Word proclaimed. May childlike faith bubble up from deep within; from that place it was first born; but sadly now serves as a prison. May those locks be destroyed and that childlike faith be free to run wild. May we not be ashamed to let our guard down and seek You as our “Abba, Father”. Bless now our hearing and bless later our going that our childlike faith may infect people around us. Come, Holy Spirit, and set our heart aflame. Through Jesus Christ our Lord we pray, Amen.

May the Holy Spirit run wild in your life.

The Pastor -|—