June Prayer Ventures
In 1 Peter 5:6-7 we read: “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.” The Apostle Peter assures us that God will hear our humble, honest, and trusting prayer, made in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Thanks be to God!
PRAYER VENTURES: June 2020
These petitions are offered as guides to prayer for the global, social and outreach ministries of the ELCA, as well as for the needs and circumstances of our neighbors, communities and world. Thank you for your continued prayers for the life and mission of this church.
1 This month has the most daylight of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and the least daylight of the year in the Southern Hemisphere. Give thanks that the gift of sunlight sustains all life on Earth and that the light of God’s love and truth, shining through Jesus, gives us the gift of new life, purpose and direction as children of God.
2 Remember and give thanks for the influence and example of people who have been martyred for their faith and courageous witness in the world. Pray that our own boldness of faith and service will dispel the fear of ridicule, persecution and death.
3 Give thanks for our LGBTQIA+ siblings in Christ and ask that the Spirit empower us, individually and together as a church, to grow more welcoming and intentionally inclusive, to value the faith and gifts of all people, and to advocate for justice and respect for people who are marginalized and excluded in the church and society.
4 Remember in prayer people who depend on seasonal employment for their livelihoods or who live with the uncertainty and anxiety of unemployment during the COVID-19 pandemic. Pray that the Spirit will make us creative and tireless in supporting and caring for others, especially our neighbors in greatest need ― locally and globally.
5 Pray for God to send the Spirit into our midst and renew humanity and all creation.
6 In this season of storms and flooding, pray that our neighbors and communities will be safe and that we will stand ready to respond when disasters strike and leave our neighbors vulnerable, grieving and wondering where to begin rebuilding their lives. Give thanks for the work we do together through Lutheran Disaster Response bringing God’s hope, healing and renewal to people whose lives have been disrupted by disaster.
7 Pray that we will hear and respond to God’s call to be disciples in the world, just as Jesus directed his disciples to visit every nation, make disciples, baptize the faithful, teach the ways and commandments of God, and spread the good news of God’s ever-present love and mercy.
8 Ask God to comfort those grieving the loss of loved ones from COVID-19, and pray that we will not forget them amid our new concerns and routines as communities and states open up again.
9 Continue to pray for synod leaders making new plans for their assemblies with concern for the health and well-being of leaders, voting members and others. Pray that the Spirit will guide their plans and strengthen them in their work proclaiming the gospel, growing the church, serving our neighbor and doing God’s work in the world.
10 “When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars that you have established; what are human beings that you are mindful of them, mortals that you care for them?” With humility and joy, give thanks and praise to God!
11 Pray for God’s wisdom and guidance as we work together and journey into the future as a thriving church, spreading the gospel and deepening faith for all people.
12 Take time to reflect on nature, humankind, the earth and the heavens above ― everything God has made ― and pray that we will stand in awe and thanksgiving to God, proclaiming God’s creation to be very good.
13 In the absence of summer camp programs, pray for the leaders and staff of our outdoor ministries as they seek new ways to sustain their organizations’ vitality, share the gospel and serve people of all ages in congregations and communities.
14 Pray that we will respond eagerly when God calls us into the world together as disciples to carry on the difficult work of Jesus, sharing the good news, caring for our neighbors in their suffering and need, bringing hope where there is despair and bearing God’s truth and light.
15 Thank God for opportunities to enjoy nature, whether in a wilderness area, urban park, community garden or forest preserve. Give thanks for how nature and fresh air renew us and lift our spirits, and pray that our neighbors with mobility challenges can get outdoors to experience and enjoy the blessings of creation.
16 Praise God for the work we accomplish together through ELCA Advocacy and for the faith-driven voice carried to our local, state and national leaders and legislators ― a common voice advocating attention, justice and compassion for those neighbors and communities whose needs and concerns are too often ignored or marginalized.
17 Give thanks that, by God’s grace through Jesus Christ, our relationship with God is restored and that we can share in the glory of God without uncertainty or fear.
18 Lutheran Services in America is a network of Lutheran social ministry organizations that connects over 300 health and human services providers throughout the country. Pray that we will engage with and support their work in serving the diverse needs of our nation’s most vulnerable people, from infants to elders.
19 God made us, and as God’s people we enjoy the blessings of God’s enduring love, faithfulness to every generation and redeeming presence. Lift up prayers of joy, thanksgiving and praise to God.
20 Augsburg Fortress summer music clinics provide opportunities for musicians to learn new seasonal music, attend workshops, participate in hymn festivals and more. Pray that these participants will be inspired, equipped and strengthened, using their musical gifts to enrich our faith communities and reveal the glory of God.
21 Living as children of God and followers of Christ is not always easy or well received by others. Pray that we will find comfort and courage in knowing that God abides with us, knows our every struggle and joy, and surrounds us with love and peace that are impossible to break or obstruct.
22 Pray for our global companions, their ministries and the people they serve in this time of sickness and death, economic upheaval, social uncertainty and slow recovery.
23 Pray for patience, comfort and courage: “O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love, answer me. With your faithful help rescue me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters. Do not let the flood sweep over me, or the deep swallow me up.”
24 John the Baptist Sometimes we think of John the Baptist as a little wild and fanatical in sharing the good news of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. Give thanks for whoever introduced you to Jesus, and pray for confidence and enthusiasm in sharing your faith and talking about Jesus in your own words.
25 Give thanks for the creeds and confessions of our church that have helped us proclaim, teach and affirm our Christian faith throughout the ages. Pray that when we recite the creeds during worship, we will reflect on our membership in the body of Christ and on the truths central to our faith.
26 Ask God to help us walk in the newness of life and freedom from sin we have through our baptism into the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
27 Ask for the Spirit to guide the deliberation, dialogue and work of ELCA members, leaders and churchwide staff as they draft a social message on government and civic engagement, to be presented to the ELCA Church Council this year.
28 Pray that every person we encounter in daily life will glimpse the Spirit dwelling within us ― an infectious spirit of kindness, justice, humility and love.
29 Give thanks for doctors, researchers and scientists throughout the world who have committed their lives to treating, preventing and eliminating diseases and to sharing their discoveries with the world for the health and well-being of all people.
30 There may be times when we feel God has forgotten us or is ignoring us. Pray that God will forgive us when we are weak or doubtful, and ask the Spirit to restore our trust in God’s steadfast love and concern.