Sunday, January 8, 2017

A Prayer

Father,

We thank You for the Church of Jesus, something He loves. It is a great gift of the Gospel.

We freely acknowledge that we need the Church. We can’t do this discipleship thing on our own. We need the ministry of the Spirit in the Church. We need the love of all the saints as they labor and have labored in the Church. We thank You that part of Your plan was to create a Church and to place us in it.

We thank You, Father, that You have blessed us as members of Your Church. By Your Spirit, You have given us abilities, tools that we can use to spread Your kingdom and to encourage Your people.

We ask You, Father, to bless our efforts at using those abilities. Without Your blessing we will fail. But with Your blessing we can change the world.

And we thank You that, because we have been a part of Your Church, we have made progress as disciples of Jesus over the years.  We are not the people who we once were. We have grown. We understand life better. We understand You better. And one big reason for that has to do with the churches that we have been a part of.

Father, we have to admit that there have been times when we have not been the kind of church members that You want us to be. We deeply regret that. We ask that You would forgive us our sins and help us to learn from all of that so that we would do better in the future.

We look forward to the day, Father, when we, Your Church, will be presented to Jesus, pure and holy and without even one little blemish, ready to enjoy a glorious forever with Him and You and the Spirit and each other. Help us Father to work hard to be a faithful church now with that sure hope clearly in our sights.

We thank You, Father, that at the heart of all of this is Jesus who has loved us and gave Himself up for us on that cross. We will spend eternity pondering the enormity of what He did there. Help us, now, to see ourselves, Your Church, in the light of that love so that all that we do as Your Church will be a response of love to Our Lord Jesus, through whom we pray, Amen.
Ephesians 5.25-27

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