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In the weeks ahead, we will be highlighting one of the many resources on the Fourth Church website that is
available to you for your personal reflection
and prayer life:
the collection of the Prayers of the People
offered during Sunday
Friday, November 14, 2014
Scripture Reading: Matthew 13:1–9
That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the lake. Such great crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat there, while the whole crowd stood on the beach. And he told them many things in parables, saying: “Listen! A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path, and the birds came and ate them up. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and they sprang up quickly, since they had no depth of soil. But when the sun rose, they were scorched; and since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. Let anyone with ears listen!” (NRSV)
Gracious God, we are humbled as we experience how quick you are to enter into our everyday. Through the gift of stories that challenge our hearts and minds, in the wonder of music that resonates deep within our souls, and by the relationships that transform our lives, you make yourself comprehensible to us, limited as we are, and for this we give you thanks.
We give you thanks for your Son, Jesus, who came among us and lived as we lived. He understood the weakness of our human natures and the mundane realities of our context; and yet, by his gift for telling stories, he took the base material of our existence and crafted parables to give us visions by which we might understand you and your goodness. We treasure the stories he told and ask only that you would make the seeds of those stories grow in our hearts, that they might bear fruit in our actions and in the words we speak to others about the new world you are making right in our midst.
We give you thanks for the many relationships with our mission partners, in this city and around the world. Through these bonds, you make it clear to us that your church is far greater than anything that could be contained within the walls of our buildings, but also that it should never think itself too grand to address the real needs of all your children who struggle to find wholeness and dignity. By the work and by the witness of all the members of this community who participate in mission, may we see your will being done in this world, and may we all be inspired to go and do likewise.
Giving you thanks for all these things, trusting that you hear these prayers and are faithful in responding, we lift our hearts to you in this moment, and as we do so, we pray the prayer our Lord Jesus taught, saying, Our Father . . .
Offered as the Prayers of the People by Hardy H. Kim,
Associate Pastor for Evangelism,
on Sunday, July 13, 2014
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