Have you been feeling disoriented in the last few days? One of the most helpful things we can do when we start feeling anxious about the unknown is to channel our anxiety into actual prayer. But how do we pray for something we have never experienced before? Sometimes it can help to have a prayer that’s already been written and to pray it in community (even if it has to be online community right now). Here’s one prayer you can pray aloud with others to help spur you on to pray more. As you pray through it, listen for the ways that Jesus is praying with you and leave a comment to let others know how you are being stirred to pray too.
(Written by Kelly Aalseth in collaboration with Jon Ball)
Our heavenly Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
We worship you as the Creator and Redeemer of all things.
Thank you, Father, for your loving care for all of creation.
Thank you, Jesus, for entering our world and taking on our flesh.
Thank you, Holy Spirit, for giving all creatures breath and helping us flourish.
We pray for those who are sick and for their caretakers.
Heal them fully and quickly.
Protect from shame and blame and the feeling that this is their fault.
Hold them with your love and grace.
We pray for the vulnerable.
Protect them from sickness and fear.
Remind us that every human life is precious to you.
Provide for those who suffer economically and whose livelihoods are at stake.
We pray for those in authority,
For every medical professional, strategic leader, and government official.
Give them wisdom and discernment, warm hearts and clear minds.
Help them listen to your voice above all others.
We confess our idols, Oh God.
In this crisis, expose the false gods we trust.
We acknowledge that we hope in many things rather than you.
Help us place our trust where it belongs—in you.
We need your mercy, Oh Lord.
Forgive us for our love of knowledge, money, and control.
Forgive us for valuing productivity more than people.
Forgive us for our racism and lack of attention to the poor.
Comfort us, Oh God,
When we feel disoriented and when our plans change.
Comfort us when our dreams are derailed.
No disappointment is too small for your attention.
Help us breathe, Oh God.
We let go of responsibilities that we were not made to carry.
We let go of the need to predict our future.
We let go of the fear of the unknown.
Revive us, Oh God.
Revive us with rest and the ability to slow down.
Revive us with creative ministry and new opportunities.
Revive us with eyes to see and ears to listen.
Draw us into deeper dependence on you.
We trust you to be our good Doctor and compassionate Mother.
We trust you to strengthen us and to provide.
We trust you because you are completely trustworthy.
Our lives are being disrupted. We are forced to let go of things that have felt both normal and essential. In all this, God invites us to come to him, to be passionate about our love for him and others.