It’s normal to struggle with prayer. This week several events have caught our attention as urgent to pray about for Christians of every stripe and walk of life in our country:
- the freedom convoy in Ottawa
- an unlawful border blockade in Alberta
- a potential new leader of the Conservative Party of Canada
- the court hearing of the Constitutional challenge of previous COVID-19 restrictions on worship in Ontario
- the application of a Charter (and Constitutional) challenge to mobility rights in Canada from the only surviving member of the original drafters
all of which have potential to either unite or continue to divide, encourage or discourage, bring more of God’s rule to bear in the world or to hinder it further. Therefore, please pray.
If you’re struggling with what to pray, then perhaps pray for wisdom for everyone involved, knowing that the Holy Spirit prays for us (Romans 8:26-27). You can also use these tools in prayer:
- the categories of adoration, confession, supplication, and thanksgiving
- make a list (like we did above)
- ask someone to pray with you
- use a prayer journal or book like the Valley of Vision or Every Moment Holy
- pray through a specific passage of the Word (like the Lord’s Prayer, the fruit of the Spirit, or the definition of love)
- make a prayer schedule or follow a monthly prayer calendar with a different focus each day
- pray in concentric circles (yourself, family, church, friends and coworkers, your city or town, province, country, continent, and globe)
Here’s a jumping-off point from Every Moment Holy vol. I, A Liturgy for the Labors of Community:
Leader: Our lives are so small, O Lord,
People: Our vision so limited,
Our courage so frail,
Our hours so fleeting.
Therefore give us grace and guidance
for the journey ahead.
We are gathered here because we believe
that we are called together into a work
we cannot yet know the fullness of.
Still, we trust the voice of
the One who has called us.
And so we offer to you, O God, these things:
Our dreams, our plans, our vision.
Shape them as You will.
Our moments and our gifts.
May they be invested toward
bright, eternal ends.
Richly bless the work before us, Father.
Shepherd us well lest we grow enamoured
of our own accomplishment
or entrenched in old habit.
Instead let us listen for Your voice,
our hearts ever open to the quiet beckonings
of Your Spirit in this endeavour.
Let us in true humility and poverty of
spirit remain ever ready to move at the
impulse of your love in the paths of your design.
You alone, O God,
by your gracious and life-giving Spirit
have power to knit our imperfect hearts,
our weaknesses, our strengths,
our stories, and our gifts, one to another.
Unite Your people and multiply
our meagre offerings, O Lord,
that all might resound to Your glory.
May our acts of service and creation,
frail and wanting as they are,
be met and multiplied by the mysterious
workings of Your Spirit
who weaves all things together
toward a redemption more good and glorious
than we yet have eyes to see,
of courage to hope for.
May our love and our labors
now echo your love and
your labors, O Lord.
Let all that we do here,
in these our brief lives,
in this our brief moment to love,
in this the work you have ordained
for this community,
flower in winsome
and beautiful foretaste
of greater glories yet to come.
O Spirit of God,
now shape our hearts.
O Spirit of God,
now guide our hands.
O Spirit of God,
now build Your kingdom among us.