prayer

Prayer Requests for Holy Week

As Holy Week approaches, we invite you to use the following suggestions as you pray for our services and our community:

For our preparations

  • For all of us to enter our Lenten practice of communal lament

  • For Sandy Richter, our Holy Week coordinator, to have strength, health, and wisdom as she leads our planning

  • For Erin, our minister of music, and all our musicians to be drawn upward in worship as they prepare to lead us

  • For wisdom about how to handle any limits in parking or seating

  • For God’s Spirit to anoint and guide each preacher: Father Kevin on Palm Sunday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday; Mother Karen at the Easter Vigil; and Mother Linda on Maundy Thursday

For our people

  • For our children and youth to deeply experience the love of Jesus and the life of the church, and for Pastor Mary, Sarah Lindsay, and Ellen Vosburg to be strengthened to serve them.

  • For our members who are sick and suffering, and those who love them, to have grace to bear with these limitations and still meet the Lord

  • For people who are new to Savior or returning to church in general, to be gently opened by God’s Spirit to receive all God has for them

  • For at least one person to return to God

  • For the many who serve in hidden ways, that they will enjoy the smile of Christ

  • For God to lead us as a people through these services, giving us discernment about the people and places He would have us serve

  • For God to raise up people with gifts as apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers who can lead a new Savior community when the time is right

For our worship:

  • For the Word of God to be proclaimed boldly and creatively through the Scripture readings in each service

  • For our prayers to be honest and Spirit-led, particularly during the Prayer Watch on Maundy Thursday and the Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday

  • For people to have the grace to give freely, joyfully, without compulsion to the Good Friday gift, and for our gift to bless immigrants and refugees

  • For all the arts—music, drama, dance, banners, craftsmanship, and more—to be more fully released in our midst

  • For a deep taste of resurrection joy at the Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday services; for heaven to come down during our worship at these services

Lamenting with the Psalms: A Brief Guide

This Lent, we are entering the practice of communal lament. If you missed Fr. Kevin’s sermon from Ash Wednesday, “The Power of Lament,” he listed 5 elements you’ll usually find in laments. You may find these helpful as you express your own pain to God.

  1. Reminding God how he acted in the past (example: Psalm 44:1-2)

  2. Describing how bad the suffering is (example: Psalm 44:9-10)

  3. Asking hard questions of God– like “How long?” and “Why don’t you act?” (examples: Psalm 44:24; Psalm 13:1-2)

  4. Dealing with our sin—if that’s involved. Some psalms, like 78, clearly confess the people’s sins, but others say, “Yes, we did sin, but now we’ve been punished enough” (like Psalm 79). Some even say, “We’re innocent. This suffering is not something we deserve” (Psalm 44:17-22)

  5. Pleading for God to help (Psalm 44:23-26)


Kevin Miller was editor and vice-president at Christianity Today for 26 years and then associate rector at Church of the Resurrection for 5 years. He has been the rector at Savior since January 2017, and is also the co-founder of PreachingToday.com and CTPastors.com.

Kevin Miller was editor and vice-president at Christianity Today for 26 years and then associate rector at Church of the Resurrection for 5 years. He has been the rector at Savior since January 2017, and is also the co-founder of PreachingToday.com and CTPastors.com.

 
 

How to Pray for Church of the Savior Right Now

At our All-Church Prayer Gathering last Wednesday, we prayed for specific needs of Church of the Savior using the guide below. Whether you were there at the gathering or not, this list may be helpful as you prayer for our community.

Loving God:

  • For divine favor on our Apostles’ Creed sermon series and for blessing on our Advent and Christmas Eve worship

  • Thanks to God for the many new children and youth! (On average, 10 more each week than last year at this time). Favor on our Staff and adults who lead them in worship and care for them.

  • Wisdom for the Vestry as they consider the best ways to accommodate our growing attendance; and as they draft the 2019 Savior budget

Loving Others:

  • Daily grace for our sick and suffering; take a moment to name those who come to mind

  • “Show us the people and places you would have us serve” and give wisdom to Christine & Luke Wulbecker as they lead us in local compassion ministries

  • For those struggling in their faith, that God would draw them close and speak to their hearts

Loving Life:

  • Thanks to God for the unity we enjoy and that we would continue in that blessing

  • Blessings on the Gingerbread Nativities on December 8

Word from Father Kevin: International Day of Prayer

My heart goes out to the many Christians around the world who suffer persecution. In honor of the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church, I offer you this prayer by an (unnamed) Asian woman at the 2016 Lausanne Movement’s Younger Leaders Gathering:

 We pray for our dear brothers and sisters around the globe who are now suffering for the name of Jesus. We claim that no suppression from the authority, no adversity from other religions, no terrorist threat could separate us from the love of Jesus, or the body of Christ. We ask for your true freedom, your true comfort and your true peace and joy to be with those who are restricted by human powers. Remember your children and fight for them and for your glory. And save the crowns of righteousness for them.

Lord, we also pray for ourselves as we bear the torch from the hands of those who gave their lives proclaiming Jesus. Let us inherit the same spirit, the spirit that inspired them and sustained them. Let us keep the memory of suffering fresh so that we can encourage those who are in sufferings. Give us strength and courage to humbly and willingly walk on the same path of Calvary that our fathers, grandfathers and saints of history have walked on.

 (From The Fellowship of the Suffering, by Paul Borthwick and Dave Ripper. InterVarsity Press, 2018.)

Blessed to Be a Blessing: Closing Prayer

Savior’s Blessed to Be a Blessing sermon series concluded on Saturday, but we pray that what we learned will continue to shape our lives and our interactions with others. As we reflect on the teachings and challenges offered to us from the pulpit over these past 5 weeks, Senior Warden Deb Nickerson offers the following prayer:

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Father God, we thank you that on this day and in this present moment, you have called us to live and serve you in this place, right where we are. Thank you for placing our church in Wheaton. Show us how to love others here, we pray. The work before us today, the people who cross our path today, the challenges and the rewards of this day, you have set before us. Give us courage and presence of mind to press forward. 

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We thank you for the example of Jesus, who demonstrated the value of slowed pace throughout His life. Provide us with the gift of seeing others not as interruptions, but as dear ones in need of healing and wholeness, worthy of our attention and love. Give us the patience to slow down. Give us the presence of mind to welcome “interruptions” as gifts and opportunities. 

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Lord God, as we see the faces of those you bring into our lives each day, give us ears to hear their stories. Give us divinely inspired interest and curiosity. Rather than the desire to be heard, give us the desire to listen. Fill us with a loving concern and appreciation for each person you place in front of us today.

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We are grateful that by your grace, you are already at work in the lives of those we will encounter today. We thank you that we do not have to sell them a package of faith, because you are already calling them gently. Give us discernment and wisdom to fulfill whatever part you would have us to play in each one’s life. 

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Father God, we thank you for this community that you have called us to. We are not on a solitary journey, isolated from your people. We thank you for friends to confront, pray and love us as we journey. Thank you for friends to advise, support and embrace us as we offer ourselves to bless those around us. 

 Mold us in your image, El Roi, God who sees Me, that we might truly see the people you place on our path. May it be so, Lord. May it be so. Amen.