Prayers of the People: An Expanded Lord’s Prayer

Each week, without fail, we pray as you taught us, your best, simple, most honest words. So we pray now, again and again,

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.
Holy is your name, God.
It’s holy when we don’t feel your presence.
Holy when we can’t hear your voice.
Holy when we don’t get what we asked for.
Holy when our faith wears thin.
Holy when everyone around us thinks we’re crazy for believing.
Holy is your name. Always, always holy. 

Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Your kingdom come, God.
Right here in Northern Kentucky.
Right here in Crescent Springs.
We need your justice, your peace.
The lion to lay down with the lamb,
and the humble to be lifted up.
Your will be done when we vote.
Your will be done when we drive.
Your will be done when we go to work.
Your will be done when we post on Facebook.
Your will be done when we fight with our spouses.
Your will be done when we call our parents.
Your will be done in every moment,
so that earth will look just a bit more like heaven. 

Give us this day our daily bread.
Stop us from wanting more, God.
From greed that leaves so many hungry,
and the earth shorn bare.
Give us what we need, but just enough
so that we remember our trust is in you,
not in the money we stock up,
the houses we fill,
or the connections we make.
Help us live in such a way,
that everyone has enough:
food, clean water, shelter,
medical care, protection.
Day by day, help us make this world enough
for all your people to live in.  

and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
This is the tough one, God.
It can be hard to believe we are forgiven,
and so we lash out, trying to earn our punishment.
Harder still to forgive,
when harm has been done.
Yet we believe forgiveness
is the only way out of all this mess.
So teach us to forgive:
when families break,
when nations war,
when harsh words linger,
when loved ones disappoint,
when we feel we are owed so much more
than what we’ve gotten.
Maybe especially when we feel it’s you
who haven’t followed through with us.
Forgive us. Help us forgive.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,
So many temptations all around:
to fall apart, to break apart, to fall away
to take more than we need,
to think we don’t need anything at all,
to pass by our neighbors in need,
to speak words of hatred and anger,
to ignore your voice God
to run from your call.
Deliver us.
Deliver us from evil.
From the evils of despair, prejudice, addiction,
hatred, self-negation, violence, abuse.
Deliver us from evil.
Day by day, deliver us.

for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever.
We do proclaim your power, even in the darkest moments,
when we are weakest,
and in the most glorious moments,
when we fully face the sun.
And so we pray for what we need,
drawing close to you,
asking your spirit to fill us.

[here individual prayers may be offered]

So once more, as Christ’s disciples now, let us pray as they were taught:

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.

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