God, we imagine ourselves as bold and strong. We like to think there is nothing we can’t handle. We’ve got it under control.
And yet, we are scared that we don’t have it under control. We are afraid of the foreign. We fear what we aren’t familiar with. We distrust the outsiders. We’d prefer to keep a lot of people on the outside of our communities… and on the outside of our lives.
Forgive us, God. Free us from our fear of others.
God, our fears divide us. We separate ourselves from one another. We don’t want to be separated, but we cling to our fears and uncertainties anyway.
Free us from our uncertainties. Open our eyes to love as you do.
We tremble at the work of nature. We tremble in the wake of floods in Louisiana and fires in California. We tremble alongside our brothers and sisters who are directly affected.
God, free us from our fear of action. What can we do to help? Open the doors of our minds so that we may see how we can be involved.
God, we pray because we believe you have the power to shape our perspectives, to provide comfort and healing. We pray your grace is revealed to those who mourn today… those who are sick, both physically and emotionally… to those who lack for the basic necessities of life.
Thank you for simple gifts, God. Thank you for joys found in youthfulness, in music, in revelation, in sharing. Thanks for providing for us. May we be good caretakers of what you provide.
You provide for us well, especially in forgiveness. You call us out of our brokenness… and are infinitely patient in doing so. Thank you.