Pastoral prayer for the first Sunday of stewardship season

October 14, 2012

The scripture I’m preaching today is Luke 12:13-21, 32-34. The following prayer coincides with this scripture:

Almighty Father,

You delight in giving us your kingdom. You delight in giving us all the good gifts that we need, not merely to survive and endure this life, but to thrive and enjoy life. You made us to be happy, and you show us the only way that true happiness is possible—a happiness that survives the grave and finds its fulfillment in resurrection. How grateful we are for your greatest gift of all, your Son Jesus! Through him, you give us forgiveness of sins, eternal life, security, hope for the future, and grace upon grace. All your gifts are right here, ready for us to receive them by the power of your Spirit.

We confess, however, that too often we don’t trust you when you show us the way to your kingdom. You see, we have our own little kingdoms in our hearts. And trusting you as much as we need to means relinquishing our place on the throne—giving up our puny little kingdom for yours. Of course you’re king anyway, no matter what we do. And one day it will be clear to the whole world, as every knee will bow and every tongue confess that you are king. Enable us to bow our knees and make our confession today, if we haven’t already. Enable us to continue to make you king of our lives. Expose the unvanquished territories of our heart that haven’t yet surrendered to you; that conspire against you; that continue to rebel. Bring every part of us under your gracious Lordship—all our thoughts, all our words, all our deeds. Make our every impulse respond to your gracious will.

We pray this in the name of your Son Jesus, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God forever. Amen.

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