Prayer of Thanksgiving and Intercession prayed on Pentecost Sunday at First Presbyterian Church; Oxford, MS, June 2017.

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God who created and is creating, on this Pentecost Sunday we give you thanks for the gift of your Spirit. With wind sweeping through your gathered people you speak the languages of our own hearts, illuminating your presence among us and nudging us toward walking in your way. 

On this day when we celebrate the beginning of your church, Lord, we pray for those who feel their communities are harder to celebrate. To people who have faced closed doors simply because of who they are, grant the assurance of your abiding love. To people mourning the empty spaces of lost loved ones, and to victims of terror the world over, grant the anchor of your peace. We know that even though being together is hard it is one of your greatest gifts to us.

As the rain has nourished creation this morning we pray that we too will do our part to nourish the gift of this earth. May we be bold in our commitment to stewarding the ground on which we walk, the water we drink and the air we breathe. For in every speck of it, there is You.

We pray for the leaders who order our lives together. For elected officials in our local and national governments, that they will lead with integrity and intention to better the lives of everyone under their leadership. For world leaders, that they might guide us in ways that embrace our shared humanity across the boundaries we have given ourselves. For faith leaders, that they may authentically speak your truth in a world that is reeling.

O Lord as we lift up to you the prayers we’ve named out loud and the ones we hold in our hearts, let us join together in praising you with the words Jesus taught us to pray, saying: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever. Amen.