1 February – Prayers for our church
Father, help us to intercede on behalf of our church. You know our imperfections and our problems. Help us to unite under Your banner and to recognise that we are different in our outlook and personality, but can still be united in Spirit. Remind us that we are to have the same mind as that of Christ and to seek the interests of others rather than our own. Give us understanding and grace to all and bring us together in prayer.
Lord, You are a great physician. Heal any hurts, differences and wounds in our church. We pray for every group and all activities in our church. May our church be a good picture of one body and one bride made up of many different people. I pray these things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
2 February – Prayers for our national leaders
Lord Jesus, we pray for our leaders to know you as their Lord and Saviour. We pray that they may have wise hearts to govern us. Lead them through wise counsel and discerning guidance.
We pray that they may leave aside their selfish desires and grievances instead focussing on what is best for our nation and the people’s best interests. We pray that You turn the hearts of our leaders towards You so that they may obey Your Word and its commands and not be lukewarm nor secularly humanistic nor Pluralist in their outlook.
May they lead us through humility and love. Protect them from temptation and the distraction of power and influence. In Jesus’ Name. Amen
3 February – Prayers for our church services
O Lord, help us to walk worthily in the calling You have given us. Help us to interact with one another in love and humility. Strengthen our minister to have a heart to serve you faithfully, and for all of us to serve one another in love in our church. We pray for the function of the 5 fold ministries in our church – that we would be a balanced, healthy, growing disciple-making church.
Grant us wisdom and patience for one another. Strengthen us in our weaknesses. Give us a breakthrough in evangelism, discipleship and desire to draw many people into your kingdom. We pray healing for broken families within our church. Break our hearts and give us vision to keep our church growing.
Help us to be useful to support the weak, needy and to be generous givers. Anoint us to heal those who are trapped under the burden of debt. In Jesus’ name. Amen
4 February – Prayers for this pandemic to be defeated
Lord, help us as we are going through this period of pandemic as so many people are bound by fear and anxiety. Lord we know that You love us and nothing can separate us from Your love.
We pray for those who are the victims of Covid-19 – may they know healing, comfort and Your peace. You are God of all flesh and there is nothing too hard for You.
We pray for hospital staff that You give them Your protection, skills and sympathy to treat the sick. Help those who are isolated. We pray for all those who are involved in the research for the treatment of this virus. Give them wisdom to find the cure for this virus. Thank You Lord for Your intervention and protection. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
The following three prayers are written by Pastor Leslie and are developed from his sermon on Lockdown Blues on Psalm 88, preached 31st January
5 February – Prayers for our country during this pandemic
We are living in an ‘age of the unthinkable,’ as the Christian thinker, Alan Hirsch describes it. It is a time when so many things we took for granted are temporarily suspended – freedom of movement, freedom to congregate, freedom of travel, and the freedom to socialise. It is important to note that they are suspended for the time being – not ended forever
However, perhaps there is more than simply a suspension of these freedoms – maybe we are entering a new age, an ‘age of uncertainty’ when certain restrictions will be a big part of our lives for the next few years; a season when many vulnerable people will be concerned about mixing in large crowds, about using public facilities that are shared by other people, and about how they can relax in social settings.
Father, if there are those walking the darkest road – we pray for Your light, deliverance and salvation. Holy Spirit, thank You for Your inspired word of God – thank You for Psalm 88. Lord Jesus, save, heal and renew our nation. Amen
6 February – Prayers for our country during this pandemic
As NT believers how can we be encouraged to keep on going in these dark days when physical touch is less possible, adversity and darkness seem to be everywhere? Psychotherapist, Julia Rivas presents three ways to help which I want to add a Christian reality to:
- Structure your day because routine is a great way to help us function in a healthy and resilient way – getting dressed, taking time to read or listen to God’s word, exercise and healthy eating at regular times, setting aside time for your devotions are all good
- Create hope – count our blessings, remember our achievements, keep in contact with family, and place our confidence in Christ. Hope, along with faith and love, are the foundational principles we are called to put on each and every day Creating hope also requires us to take time to be thankful and to remain committed to our Christian discipleship pathway
- Be Kind and good to ourselves – speaking positively to ourselves, refusing to accept the negative narrative that the darkness wants to engulf us in, and still launching out in faith demonstrating the love of God in Christ in how we actively seek for ways to demonstrate God’s love to others.
Father, help us to structure our days, to focus on those things that will create hope, and to be good and kind to ourselves as we seek to navigate this season. Forgive us when we sin, and may we become more astute and biblically understanding about our true standing in Christ. Amen
7 February – Prayers for our country during this pandemic. A focus on Psalm 88
Father, thank You for the Psalms which are great for helping us to put into words those things that are happening in us, around us and to us. We may be in the midst of the ages of the unthinkable, uncertainty, and vulnerability, but You are still faithful and Christ is still able to save to the uttermost those who come to You through Him.
William MacDonald calls Psalm 88 the ‘saddest Psalm.’ It is a Psalm of Lament or Complaint – a Psalm to help people express their depression, worries, pains, fears, uncertainties, vulnerabilities. You gave these Psalms as a way to worship honestly while experiencing affliction, physical, mental or spiritual depression or illness, all in the face of oppression.
You do not want us to hide our complaints or pain, but to pour them out to You. Jon Bloom says beautifully, ‘they give inspired voice to our troubled souls.’ Psalms of Lament are not pity party Psalms – they are Psalms of Trust. They help us express the reality of pain to You, our Sovereign God while we live in this troubled world.
There is only one Psalm like Psalm 88 in the Psalter – but it is there, and perhaps it is there to help us articulate what we are going through in a time such as this. It also reminds us that there are people around us who, from their youth, walk a dark and painful road – believers are not immune from this; there is comfort that others also walk the same pathway – even if it is a pathway marked with suffering. As we read and pray through this Psalm – may Your Spirit help us to intercede for all those walking a dark pathway. In Jesus’ name. Amen