by Matt DeWoody, Pastor of Youth, First Evangelical Free Church, Austin, TX
spirit of silence and peace…
“Make yourself comfortable…anywhere in the room…alone or together”
To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God.
Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me.
No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame,
but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse.
Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths;
guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.
Prayer of Praise… Praise God that He is sovereign, that He has ultimate control over all, and that nothing takes Him by surprise.
I am the LORD, and there is no other; apart from me there is no God.
I will strengthen you, though you have not acknowledged me,
so that from the rising of the sun
to the place of its setting men may know
there is none besides me. I am the LORD, and there is no other.
I form the light and create darkness,
I bring prosperity and create disaster;
I, the LORD, do all these things.
Prayer for the Hurting…
Those who are injured, those who have lost loved ones
The women who are now widows
The men who are now widowers
The children who are now orphans
[Song: “Needful Hands” by Jars of Clay]
LA 1:1-2, 10, 2:11, 16, 18 How deserted lies the city, once so full of people!
How like a widow is she, who once was great among the nations!
She who was queen among the provinces has now become a slave.
Bitterly she weeps at night, tears are upon her cheeks.
The enemy laid hands on all her treasures;
she saw pagan nations enter her sanctuary–
those you had forbidden to enter your assembly.
My eyes fail from weeping, I am in torment within,
my heart is poured out on the ground
because my people are destroyed,
because children and infants faint in the streets of the city.
All your enemies open their mouths wide against you;
they scoff and gnash their teeth and say,
“We have swallowed her up. This is the day we have waited for; we have lived to see it.”
The hearts of the people cry out to the Lord.
Pray for Hope…
For God's love, compassion, and faithfulness to be made clear
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”
The LORD is good to those
whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him;
it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.
Prayer for Peace…
For God's love to drive out fear and hate
[Song: “Draw Me Close” by The Katinas]
1 JN 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. ISA 51:12 “I, even I, am he who comforts you. Who are you that you fear mortal men, the sons of men, who are but grass, ISA 51:13 that you forget the LORD your Maker, who stretched out the heavens and laid the foundations of the earth…
Prayer for Justice…
For God's will to be done
PS 5:1-8, 11-12 Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my sighing.
Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God, for to you I pray.
In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice;
in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.
You are not a God who takes pleasure in evil;
with you the wicked cannot dwell.
The arrogant cannot stand in your presence;
you hate all who do wrong.
You destroy those who tell lies;
bloodthirsty and deceitful men the LORD abhors.
But I, by your great mercy, will come into your house;
in reverence will I bow down toward your holy temple.
Lead me, O LORD, in your righteousness because of my enemies–
make straight your way before me…
But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
that those who love your name may rejoice in you.
For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous;
you surround them with your favor as with a shield.
“In Jesus' Name, Amen.”