Prayers for the beginning of Lent

Prayers –Lent 1 – 18th February 2024 The Rev'd Grace Redpath

Lord Jesus,
Companion in our wilderness, Comforter in our temptations, Counsellor in our struggles,
as our eyes turn towards Calvary, we lean into your strengthening presence for the weeks of Lent that lie ahead, trusting that you know our weakness, share our sorrows, and forgive us of and save us from our sins, with a love stronger than death, meaning that when death has done everything it can do, there’s still love, a love that holds us in every circumstance of life and which will never let us go.
Trusting in that love we pray for this world which you created in all its beauty, glimpsed in the hills and the sunsets, the spring flowers and bushes in bud, grateful for the joy and hope they instil in us, but also recognising that joy and hope is in short supply for many in the places where human beings are suffering and living in terror.
We pray for those for whom hunger is physical and painful.
Those living in refugee camps with few facilities to feed their families and keep warm on cold nights, and who fear where the next bomb will fall.
Those whose daily lives are affected by climate change.
Those made poor by ruthless economies and cruel wars.
In Ukraine and Gaza.
For those world leaders who make decisions that oppress and cause so much pain, we pray that you Lord will open their eyes to see the consequences of their decisions. Soften their hearts to act with compassion towards their fellow-human beings.
Lord, in your mercy…
We pray for all those who don’t ever see much beauty; those in prison, or working in buildings/factories with little light, people deep in depression, those abused by others, those who see no end to life-draining situations that leave them feeling trapped and weary. And in silence in the stillness of this place we pray for those we love and are concerned about.
Trusting in your love, we pray that you will send people alongside them to live out a love that brings healing and hope.
Lord, in your mercy…
We pray for the church worldwide, including those who lead us, Mark, our Primus, and John, our Bishop, that during this clearing season, we, your people, will take time to be deeply honest with you Lord, as we review our lives, ask questions of ourselves, and reflect on our relationship with you.
Trusting in your love, give us the courage to make the changes you reveal as we listen to your voice so that we might grow closer to you and be bearers of your joy and hope.
Lord, in your mercy…
We pray for those who have lost loved ones, living in grief, those where the light has gone out of their lives, praying particularly for those whose loss is recent.
We also give thanks for those whose anniversaries of death occur this week.
Trusting in your love and knowing the comfort that you can bring we pray strength for all who mourn today.
Lord, in your mercy…
God of the wilderness, of all pain and every joy, be with us as we journey through Lent, and send your angels to bless us, as we recognise that your joy is us, your beloved children.
We offer these prayers, in the name of Jesus Christ, your beloved Son. Amen.
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