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Prayers of Thanksgiving, Intercession, and Petition

Shared during Sunday Worship on December 24, 2023.

God of all, we are grateful for the shepherds. While their encounter with the angel discloses a mystical moment of historic importance, we are reminded that jobs like theirs are not easy and entail a measure of risk. On this morning in which we find ourselves in a warm sanctuary with bright lights we are reminded that it takes people like the shepherds to keep our world going. They work long hours through the night hauling food on trucks, running out in the snow to fix power lines, and keeping safe watch over our homes, our streets, and places of business.  While many of us are in our beds, others work emergency rooms, drive ambulances, and keep pharmacies open 24 hours a day.  

 

We pray for those who work into the deep of night and those who incur risk to care for our lives while we sleep…

 

Lord, in the deep of night the shepherds found themselves quaking with fear. As we consider the relative safety of our lives we realize there are people in places of violence all around the world and even in our country whose every waking moment is filled with the possibility that this breath will be their last.  We pray for Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Israel, Palestine, Ukraine, Russia and more. We especially pray that You watch over children and all civilians. We pray that our Lord, the Prince of Peace, will bring peace to all people and places in conflict.

 

We pray for those who live in fear…

 

Upon hearing the message of the angels, the shepherd's fear turned to awe; at that moment Your Word tells us the glory of the Lord shone round about them, the beauty of this moment invokes our wonder at Your brilliant presence. After this gift they went and shared the story with Mary and in turn others wrote this story down that we might be blessed in its retelling. Restore to use the awe of Your presence that we might bear witness to Your grace.

 

We pray for the Spirit to dwell within us to glorify and praise You…

 

To you God belongs the awe, joy, and delight of the beauty of life and grant us the vision to see in the Christ child what you ask of our humanity and what we are to see in the nature of our glory. Amen. 


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