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Community of Prayer
Contents
  • Prayers based on Psalms (by Ruth Jarman):
  • Design for a handmade Christmas card by Emil Elizabeth Smith in 1993
  • Psalm 4
  • Psalm 24
  • Psalm 28
  • Psalm 43
  • Psalm 46
  • Pacific Leaders' Prayer
  • "Be content with what you have..."
  • Meditation after a walk
  • Golden Ball - Reflections at Sunset
  • Psalm of the Cosmos
  • Easter Prayer
  • Prayers
    Prayers based on Psalms, with "the enemy" being climate change or "the powers that be" that are causing it - by Ruth Jarman (See Introduction)
    A prayer based on Psalm 4
    "Answer me when I call to you,
    O my righteous God.
    Give me relief from my distress;
    be merciful to me and hear my prayer."
    How long, O men and women, will you turn the glory of the earth into dangerous pollution?
    How long will we love the delusion of consumerism and seek the false gods of money and possessions?
    Help us to remember that you have set apart the godly for yourself;
    that you will hear us when we call to you.
    In our exasperation and anxiety do not let us lose hope;
    when we have quiet times in the day,
    let us search our hearts and be silent.
    Help us to live our lives sacrificially and to trust in the Lord.
    Many are asking "What is the point? The earth is finished. Who can save us now?"
    "Let the light of your face shine upon us, O Lord.
    You have filled my heart with greater joy
    than when their grain and new wine abound.
    I will lie down and sleep in peace,
    for you alone, O Lord,
    make me dwell in safety."
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    A prayer based on Psalm 24
    "The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it,
    the world, and all who live in it;
    for he founded it upon the seas
    and established it upon the waters."
    Lord, your world is in danger. The enemy is hiding behind vested interests and sceptics, waiting to plunder and rape your earth.
    We cry to you, Lord, protect your creation,
    defend the work of your hands.
    Save our generation from our addiction to fossil fuels.
    Wash our hands of their clutch on dirty energy,
    clean our hearts of our desire for more and more.
    Turn our souls away from materialism
    and our desires from taking and taking from your sacred, limited world.
    Give us a vision of the blessings we will receive if we turn away from idolatry of the economy and bow to wisdom and truth.
    Let man and woman-kind see that true happiness rests in enjoying your earth as you intended, not according to the lies of the enemy.
    Show us that a kinder and simpler lifestyle will allow us to see your glory more clearly.
    Let your glory of the King of glory shine through your kingdom.
    "Lift up your heads, O you gates;
    lift them up, you ancient doors,
    that the King of glory may come in.
    Who is he, this King of glory?
    The Lord Almighty -
    he is the King of glory."
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    A prayer based on Psalm 28
    "To you I call, O Lord my Rock;
    do not turn a deaf ear to me."
    For if you remain silent,
    all our efforts to defend our climate will be worthless.
    Help us to stand against the culture of our times where people speak cordially with people they meet while living lives that will destroy the lives of people they will never meet.
    Where institutions show no regard for the works of the Lord and what his hands have done, may you tear them down and never build them up again.
    Where corporations are getting fat by consuming our children's inheritance, repay them for their deeds and their evil work and transform them to respond to your divine calling and regard your creation with reverence.
    "Praise be to the Lord,
    for he has heard my cry for mercy.
    The Lord is my strength and my shield;
    my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.
    My heart leaps for joy
    and I will give thanks to him in song.
    The Lord is the strength of his people,
    a fortress of salvation for his annointed one.
    Save your people and bless your inheritance;
    be their shepherd and carry them forever."
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    A prayer based on Psalm 43
    "Why are you so downcast, O my soul?
    Why so disturbed within me?"
    Lord, the enemy is near, stalking our children.
    Vindicate us, O God,
    and plead our cause against an ungodly world system;
    rescue us from deceitful and wicked powers.
    You are God our stronghold.
    Why have you rejected us?
    Why must we go about mourning,
    oppressed by the enemy that lies in wait for our sons and daughters?
    Send forth your light and your truth,
    let them guide us;
    Let your light and your truth guide how we deal with our hopelessness,
    Let your light and your truth guide us to live in a way that fights instead of feeding the enemy.
    Let your light and your truth reveal the foolishness of greed and rampant consumerism and lead the nations to repentence and the path of life.
    "Why are you so downcast, O my soul?
    Why so disturbed within me?
    Put your hope in God
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Saviour and my God."
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    A prayer based on Psalm 46
    "God is our refuge and strength,
    an ever present help in trouble
    Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
    and the mountains fall into the sea,
    though its waters roar and foam
    and the mountains quake with their surging.
    There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, "
    a source of blessing to refresh us as we fight the enemy.
    Pour on us your spirit, O Lord, and equip us for battle.
    Do not fail us now when we need your sustaining power.
    Give us the time, Lord, to defeat climate change before it takes your world to wrack and ruin,
    Give us the energy and hope we need to keep going when all seems lost,
    Give us the funding to do battle against rich vested interests,
    Give us the people with the necessary talent and wisdom that comes from you.
    Be our ever present help in these troubled times.
    Dispel the night of danger by your dawn of deliverance.
    Where leaders stoop to feed our ever growing hunger for more and more, open their eyes to the wisdom of simplicity,
    Where governments buy our votes with cheap flights and petrol, open their ears to the laws of nature that are screaming at us to stop pushing their limits.
    Lord, make our thirst for fossil fuels cease to the ends of the earth,
    break our addiction to dirty energy,
    shatter the clutch of consumerism,
    quench our desire for more and more material things.
    "Be still and know that I am God;
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth.
    The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress."
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    Pacific Church Leaders' Prayer
    In his letter (#37) to people updating them about issues of Climate Change, David Hallman wrote:
    Dear Friends, On February 16, 2005, the Kyoto Protocol came into effect as international law. On that occasion, Pacific Church leaders led worship at the WCC Central Committee meeting including use of the following prayer (excerpts):
    Dear Father in Heaven,
    You have created Mother Earth in a wonderful and awesome way. You are preserving this beauty of creation every single day thus giving us the rich base on which we can enjoy our lives.
    But your creation is not just a gift to us, you have asked us to use it accordingly to your will and to fulfil our given responsibility to protect your creation against all destructive forces.
    We are co-workers of yours.
    We tend to forget this responsibility in our striving for a comfortable life. As a result, our planet with all its beautiful creatures and vegetation is suffering. If we do not change our lifestyle soon we, the people of the Pacific, will suffer the most.
    The rising sea-levels, the increasing number of cyclones, the droughts, the pollution in our air, the increased extreme weather conditions - we can already feel it.
    We pray these words knowing that our sisters and brothers in Jesus Christ all throughout the Pacific region join us today in this prayer of concern about your creation and of thankfulness for the coming into life of the Kyoto Protocol.
    Let us raise our voices together in the ecumenical family in favour for your creation! Let us make the world community hear our environmental concerns and our suffering! Let us support projects that call upon Australia and the USA who are major producers of climate-change-gases and who have not yet ratified the Kyoto Protocol to do so in the near future!
    Let us be advocates for our Mother Earth!
    Let us be advocates especially for our precious and endangered Pacific Islands! Let us be advocates for our Vanua - the seas and the land! Let us not only talk about change, let us DO your word in our day to day lives! Please give us strength and courage to be workers and fighters for your creation before it is too late!
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    "Be content with what you have..."    by Joyce Dinham
    Creator of the Universe,
    Lover of all that you make,
    We thank you for this marvellous world
    Which you have given us for our home.
    Help us to show our gratitude
    As much by our lives as by our words.
    We acknowledge that so often
    Our best efforts are tinged with greed,
    The desire for more and different things;
    And, at our worst we wholly disregard
    The needs of others in this world.
    Our greed is nothing less than theft
    From those who have no power against us -
    People, animals and nature's store.
    So much we once have done in ignorance;
    In these days we have no excuse.
    Continue, Lord, to open our eyes
    To the enormity of our deeds,
    And our hearts to the suffering and despoiling
    Which those deeds have caused.
    We ask forgiveness, Lord, from you;
    From the children, women and men
    Whose hurts have come from us;
    And from every animal, plant and rock,
    The skies above and the good earth itself,
    Which nourishes and sustains us all.
    By the power of your Spirit
    May we change the way we live,
    And walk again in your healing ways,
    O Creator of the Universe,
    And Lover of all that you make.
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    Meditation after a walk from Ashmansworth, Hants., 2nd May 2005    by Joyce Dinham
    From this Down's height I see, circling the hills,
    A living crown of trees in varied hues
    Of green and white and red and brown.
    Two larks ascending, carry their trilling notes
    Heavenwards; and high above them floats
    A buzzard searching for its prey.
    Below us all, the valley lies,
    Furrows shining green with shoots
    Springing from their bed of earth
    Richly brown and streaked with chalky white.
    On higher slopes the rabbits sun themselves,
    And, at a sound, run, into safe hiding-places.
    A herd of deer, quiet and slow, moves along
    Intent upon their grazing; and, almost at my feet,
    Across the path a field-mouse scuttles.
    The warm spring sun is cooled by a breeze,
    Which pushes the layered clouds
    Into the marvellous sky-scape
    Of a perfect day in May.
    I want to bow my head and lift my hands -
    As signs of thanks and joy -
    To the Creator of it all.
    Then, on the far horizon of my mind,
    I see an angry rising sea
    Come from the distant melting ice.
    It seizes sloping shores to take them to itself;
    Then floods, with fingers long and strong
    Reaching far into the land,
    To make new shores, and lakes and rivers wide,
    Ousting from their ancient habitation
    The holy fellowship of plants and animals
    And humankind.
    Great winds and rains assist the probing seas
    In the task of change. At intervals,
    When they subside, the sun from cloudless skies,
    Delivers the last transforming blows -
    Which recreate, indeed, new heavens and earth
    In place of this green English scene of early May.
    Again I want to bow my head and lift my hands -
    But now in fear and questioning -
    To the Creator of it all.
    I shout out "Why, O Lord?".
    Swift and stark the answer comes,
    "Ask that of your own kind! I have shown
    to them - and you - the reason why,
    and knowledge of the way to change the vision.
    You must supply the will!!"
    Once more I bow my head and lift my hands
    As signs of sorrow and remorse;
    I ask again, with now a whispered "Why?
    Not just this valley, sweet and green,
    but, Lord, in many lands
    a million hills and vales,
    so sweet also to those whose home is there,
    are changed or lost through sun and seas;
    and their inhabitants are innocent
    of my offence against your world?"
    Quiet and firm the answer comes.
    "This knowledge is beyond your grasp;
    your task is now to trust
    and walk the two-fold way of love.
    My Spirit gives you light and strength.
    You must supply the will!!"
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    Golden Ball - Reflections at sunset, 25/5/05    by Joyce Dinham
    My golden ball hangs by a golden yarn
    From my wood-gold curtain rail;
    It is half-obscured by the golden drape
    With its pattern of golden sun-rays.
    Behind it the fading golden sky
    Is streaked with the grey of evening clouds.
    And then I recall that my golden globe
    Was formed from the glowing white-gold ash
    Flung forth from the burning golden heart
    Of bursting Mount St. Helen's.
    The fading gold of the cooling ash
    Turned grey like the evening clouds,
    Until the skill of the maker of glass
    Created my beautiful golden ball,
    Which hangs from my wood-gold curtain rail.
    I live on a wonderful blue-green ball
    Enfolded by floating clouds of grey.
    It hangs in space as it spins its way
    Round the flaming sun which controls it all.
    But the blue-green ball is changing now;
    Its embracing clouds have lost their power
    To guard from the magic rays of the sun,
    Giving life or death to the globe below.
    My kin and I have despoiled those clouds
    By the ash we have flung from our oil-soaked hearts.
    God strengthen our will to make clean again
    Our blue-green ball, as it hangs in space
    Like my golden ball with its golden yarn,
    Which hangs from my wood-gold curtain rail.
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    Psalm of the Cosmos
    The following prayer is reprinted with kind permission from the prayers page of Web of Creation:
    Loving God, loving God,
    all creation calls you blessed,
    and so do we, and so do we.
    Loving God,
    all your creation calls you blessed.
    Your spirit imprints the whole universe with life and mystery.
    Yes, all creation proclaims your love.
    We now join this chorus of praise.
    Loving God,
    all of nature calls you blessed,
    and so do we.
    For you have woven an intimate tapestry
    and call it life
    and called it good.
    In love you have formed a universe
    so diverse yet so related,
    and into its web you call us forth
    to walk the land and swim the sea
    with all our natural brothers and sisters.
    To the stars
    we seem no more than blades of grass.
    Yet to you, each of us,
    as each blade of grass and each star,
    is an irreplaceable treasure,
    an essential companion on this journey of love.
    Loving God, as you lure the whole world into salvation,
    guide us with your Spirit
    that we might not be only pilgrims on the earth,
    but pilgrims with the earth,
    journeying home to you.
    Open our hearts to understand
    the intimate relationship that you have with all creation.
    Only with this faith can we hope
    for tomorrow's children.
    Amen. Alleluia!
    Loving God, loving God,
    all creation calls you blessed,
    and so do we, and so do we.
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    Easter Prayer    by Miriam Pepper
    Creator God,
    who enlivens all things....
    We thank you for your loving gift of creation, and for the gift of Jesus.
    Thank you for Christian Ecology Link, a group of people who in response to your love have committed themselves to work together to help bring about your kingdom of justice, peace and flourishing on earth.
    Thank you for the love, support and hope that these people bring to each other and to others, for the individuals here and for those not with us, for their vision, courage and witness as they follow on the path of the cross.
    This work is not easy, and can be thankless and isolating. At times it even seems hopeless. In this age of war, widening social inequalities, worsening climate change, and of ever greater environmental destruction, help us to remember the resurrection.
    Remind us that it is not so much how we understand the resurrection in the light of history, but how we understand history in the light of the resurrection.
    The resurrection of Jesus shows us that the status quo can, must and will change. Amidst death and decay, we are witnesses to the coming of spring. We are convinced that another world is indeed possible. Help us to devote our lives to that vision, with joy, integrity and courage.
    In the name of Christ.
    Amen.
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