Distraction (2 Thessalonians 2:1–5, 13–17)

Keep us from being distracted, Lord.
Help us to focus on the here and now.
As we sit here in this sacred space,
some of us are uncertain of the future,
and perhaps still holding our breath.
As we sit here in this sacred space,
we feel your presence.
Help us to breathe freely,
as we breathe in deeply
remind us that you are with us and
as we breathe out
remind us that our doubts and fears can be handed over to you.

Keep us from being distracted, Lord.
Help us to focus on the here and now.
As we sit here, together as your people,
we are aware of our differences but,
more importantly, we are aware of how we are alike.
Help us to breathe as one people,
as we breathe in
remind us that we are to support one another
as we breathe out
remind us that our foundation is you and your teachings.

Keep us from being distracted, Lord.
Help us to focus on the here and now.
The early church faced a fear of the future,
and still today, the church, and your people, can be fearful.
Help us to breathe in your Spirit,
as we breathe in
fill us with your love and grace
as we breathe out
open our hearts to how we can share that love with others.
We are your people, Lord.
Give us the strength to carry out your will.
Give us the courage to stand up for what is right,
to fulfill the plans you have here on earth.
As the body of Christ, we live up those among us who are in
need of healing and support. We name ___ and ask
that you be with them.

Keep us from being distracted, Lord.
Help us to focus on the here and now.
As your people, we stand firm to the foundations of your teaching.
We lift up our voices using the words that you taught us,
“Our Father…”

The Sense of Loyalty (2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14)

As we look around at the people in our lives,
we realize that we are connected and intertwined
with one another.
Some of those in our lives are our teachers;
others our students.
Some of those in our lives are our cheerleaders;
others our detractors.
Some of those in our lives inspire us;
others are examples of how not to live our lives.

Help us to see those connections to others more clearly.
Help us to see how we impact those around us.
Help us to see the needs of those around us.

As we look at our lives and understand where we
spend our time, our money and our worry,
we can see where our loyalties truly lie.
Our lives intersect with many others.
Help us to see where our actions don’t meet our words.
If we say that family is important to us,
are we spending enough time with them?
If we say that the environment is important to us,
are we acting in ways as individual stewards of God’s earth?
If we say that we are all God’s children,
are we working to create unity and fairness or
do we allow divisiveness to create barriers between us?

Help us to see our connections to others more clearly.
Help us to see how we impact those around us.
Help us to see the needs of those around us.

As we look around at the people in our lives,
we see the teachers in our lives.
You sent us your son, who taught us
your ways and your teachings.
Before Jesus, we heard your word
through the prophets.

Help us to see our connections to others more clearly.
Help us to live out your teachings in ways that improve
our lives and the lives of others.
As your children, we know that you are with us always.
We ask that you be with those among us today
who need your presence the most.
We name ___.
Help us to be the people of God and to support those
among us in need.
Help us to be loyal to the right things.
Help us to stay true to your teachings and to
live them out in our daily lives.

As your students, we live up the words our Teacher gave us,
“Our Father…”

The Lord’s Prayer (John 18:33-37)

You gave us the Lord’s Prayer,
a prayer we say every week,
perhaps every day.
Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Lord, you told Pilate that your kingdom
is not from this world.
You were right.
You came to us and shared our humanness.
Your kingdom did not come from here rather
you came to us to give us your kingdom.

Your teachings showed us that you are the way.
We are to make this world like your kingdom.
Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
The kingdom you sought to make here on earth
was not a violent world.
You taught us peaceful resistance.
You taught us to speak for the powerless and
to love the unlovable.
You taught us to care for the sick,
to strengthen the weak, and
to always speak the truth in love.
In your teachings, you showed love at all times.

Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us the courage to stand up for those without power.
Give us the wisdom to see the plans you have for us here on earth.
Give us the strength to follow your teachings and
to open our hearts to your love.
We have come together to make this your community.
We support each other and we know that you are with us always.
As your children, Father, we ask that you be with those among us
who need your support and healing grace the most.
We name __.

Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
This is your world, this is your kingdom.
Help us to make this world your world.
Help us to truly be your people,
to be your church in this world.
We use the words that you taught us, Jesus,
the words that make us your followers,
“Our Father…”