An Old Man’s Prayer: Pastoral Prayer


oldmanpraying

Heavenly father, this past week I chuckled when I received an email newsletter for young clergy.   At first I shook my head.   I am 42 years old.   I have a daughter in high school.   I am thinking about 401ks and College funds.   I am no longer a young anything.   I have reached middle age.

At first, it was funny to think that in your church 42 may be young.   As I thought about it further, the laughter faded.  I realized it was a bit scary too.   God, I don’t want to grow old.   I don’t want any part of it. None of us, when faced with the choice would embrace the uncertainty of the future at the expense of today.

We are not ready for the changes that time brings, but God, since we have no power to stop the clock, our prayer is simple: Let our time here pass with Grace.

Be with us and show us the way.  Grant us physical, mental and spiritual health.  Give us strength to overcome the challenges laid before us.   Teach us to overcome our need for control or our own vanity. Teach us to move beyond self pity.   Teach us to always be young at heart and avoid becoming set in our ways.

Let the wisdom that comes with age, flow from our hearts to those around us. Let that wisdom flow from not only our mouths but from our example.   Let people see in us an authentic faith that speaks to the God we believe you to be. May the love of our family, friends, and church be the reward for working so hard, and struggling through so much.

There are so many things we so often take for granted. May we not ignore them today.  As we consider the truly young among us, let us find a renewed commitment to helping them grow in Grace and discernment.   Let us be faces of comfort, and let this be a place of hope for them, and not old fashioned stubbornness, hypocrisy, or irrelevance.  Let the church stand as truly the place she was meant to be.

As we offer these prayers help us to remember that our lives are blessings, that our health is a gift, and that today is filled with awesome, limitless, and unimagined potential.  Help us to meet each day with a questioning heart, searching out that new and unique thing, that we have the opportunity to introduce to this world.

Help us to remember to be kind, to work towards change, and to stay true to the people we are called to be.   When we remember all those in our church, our community, or all the circles of our lives that are sick and need healing, help us to be people present in their need.   Help us to be their hope, their strength, and their promise.   Help us to be the Jesus they need to see.

Teach us to see all the beauty of your creation, that we so often ignore, and in that beauty see both your Grace and your promise.   Together as your disciples we offer your prayer, and together we say;  Our Father….

(Pic Source: Babraindette, Flckr.com(2012)

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