God, during these final days of August, when the living is meant to be easy, the grapes are ripening on the vines, the corn stalks come up to the eaves, and car doors need to be locked against the flood of monster zucchinis left as gifts in the middle of the night, let us be grateful.
Around your planet we pray for the people who are trying to survive devastating periods of war, unrest, hunger and displacement. We pray for our brothers & sisters at Nyanyadzi Methodist Church in Zimbabwe, for Peacemakers and peacekeepers serving throughout the world, doctors without borders, Red Cross workers, all those who volunteer their time and abilities of any sort. In our world council of churches we pray for: Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. And in our Kootenay Presbytery Prayer Roster we ask for blessings for Jenna Wood and Catherine Cameron, the youth representatives of Kootenay presbytery.
We keep in our hearts and minds those who need a supporting hand this week. They are named in out Prayer List... and any others whose names we say aloud or silently....
Guide the leaders of the world's countries so they may choose what is best for the people they must lead, rather than to choose answers that will return them to office. Let them be strong leaders rather than power-seekers. Let them decide to share with the multitudes and remember with compassion all those who are hungry.
God of compassion, let us be good stewards of our planet earth and all its creatures. Give us the opportunity to be a positive example. Help us to see that, like a ladybug (in Dutch called an onze lieve heer's beestje:"Our Sweet Lord creature"), something small can make a huge difference, and in this time of overabundance that something small can spread large joy. Let us remember that we need to leave for our future generations that which we enjoy ourselves.
With St. Francis we pray that we may be an instrument of your peace, to sow love where there is hatred, to sow pardon where there is injury, faith where there is doubt, hope where there is despair, light where there is darkness, and joy where there is sadness.
Grant us that we may seek not so much to be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive, even in giving zucchinis,
It is in forgiving that we are forgiven
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
And the people say... "Amen."