Prayer Chain II

Corporate Prayer within the community (Local Church, workplace, faith-based communities, etc…) as it assembles, and prayer by community members for one another, are powerful means which the Holy Spirit uses daily to bring blessing to Christians (staff and members) within the community. – Dr. Wayne Grudem

crop black man showing pray gesture
Photo by Monstera on Pexels.com

“Heavenly Father, you sent your Son among us to proclaim the Kingdom of God in cities, towns, villages, and lonely places. Behold and visit, we pray, the community of Lakewood, and surrounding cities. Renew the bonds of charity and uphold our civic life. Send us honest and able leaders. Deliver us from poverty, prejudice, and oppression, that peace may prevail with righteousness and justice with mercy. And at last, bring us to your Holy City, and New Jerusalem, where we shall know perfect unity and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”[1]

“Embracing Father, You grace each of us with equal measure in your love. Let us learn to love our neighbors more deeply so that we can create peaceful and just communities. Inspire us to use our creative energies to build the structures we need to overcome the obstacles of intolerance and indifference. May Jesus provide us with the example needed and send the Spirit to warm our hearts for the journey. Amen”[2]

Prayer for Compassion for Others in Our Community
Majesty on high, may Your love and compassion flow through us and to those around us. Give us pity and concern for their misfortunes and suffering. Give us the compassion and empathy we need to understand what those in our community are going through. Help us to love them well. Help us not to judge or condemn, but rather come alongside them to offer support and to be Your hands and feet. Amen.[3]

Prayer for Hope in Our Community and City
Lord, our Protector, and Shield defend us from anything that would crush hope in our community and city. May confident expectation that good things are on the horizon rises up in our hearts. May we, individually and collectively, look to You as our ultimate hope and our champion. Give us faith in place of despair, and resilience in place of resignation. Turn our anguish and desperation into elation and assurance. Amen.[4]

pink pencil on open bible page and pink
Photo by John-Mark Smith on Pexels.com

Weekly Scripture

“4Rejoice in the Lord always; again, I will say, rejoice.  5Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:4-7 ESV).[5]

Commentary

living in the light of his presence (4:5–7)

“4:5. In addition to joy, believers are to have gentleness, which is to be evident to all. Epieikes (“gentleness”) suggests a forbearing, non-retaliatory spirit. Joy, an inner quality in relation to circumstances, may not always be seen; but the way one reacts to others—whether in gentleness or harshness—will be noticed. Why be gentle? Because the Lord is near. This probably refers to the Rapture, not to His presence with His own at all times.

4:6–7. Joy and gentleness (Vv. 4–5), accompanied by an awareness of Christ’s imminent return, should dispel anxiety. Paul’s appeal to the Philippians is do not be anxious about anything. But this was not a call to a carefree life. To care and be genuinely concerned is one thing. To worry is another. Paul and Timothy cared for the people they ministered to (2 Cor. 11:28; Phil. 2:20), yet they retained trust in God. Jesus warned against worry which obviously eliminates trust in God (Matt. 6:25–33).

Paul exhorted the Philippians to prayer instead of anxiety. Praying with thanksgiving involves trusting God. Four words are used here to describe a believer’s communion with God. Prayer (proseuchē) describes a believer’s approach to God. Petition (deēsei) emphasizes requesting an answer to a specific need. Thanksgiving (eucharistias) is an attitude of heart which should always accompany one’s prayers. Requests (aitēmata) speak of definite and specific things asked for.

When the exhortations of verses 4–6 are heeded, the peace of God (v. 7) will flood one’s troubled soul. The Lord Jesus Christ is a believer’s peace (Eph. 2:14), and every child of God has peace with God through justification by faith (Rom. 5:1). But the peace of (or from) God relates to the inner tranquility of a believer’s close walk with God. This peace of God transcends all understanding, that is, it is beyond man’s ability to comprehend. This peace guards the believers.”[6]

Footnotes:

[1] The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments: with Other Rites and Ceremonies of the Church (Huntington Beach, CA: Anglican Liturgy Press, 2019), 658-659.

[2] United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, “Prayer for Community,” USCCB, last modified 2022, accessed January 16, 2022, https://www.usccb.org/prayers/prayer-community.

[3] Editor in Chief, “15 Powerful Prayers for Our Community,” ConnectUS, last modified June 23, 2020, accessed January 16, 2022, https://connectusfund.org/15-powerful-prayers-for-our-community.

[4] Editor in Chief, “15 Powerful Prayers for Our Community,” ConnectUS, last modified June 23, 2020, accessed January 16, 2022, https://connectusfund.org/15-powerful-prayers-for-our-community.

[5] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Php 4:4–7.

[6] Robert P. Lightner, “Philippians,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures, ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985), 663–664.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s