We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia.
We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. 2 Cor. 1:8-9 (NLT)
Heavenly Father, what a joy it is to call you both Father, and the God of Resurrection. Death died, and evil received a mortal wound, the Day you raised Jesus from the grave. On your time schedule, everything sad will come untrue, and everything broken will be made new. Resplendent beauty will replace pervasive ugly, and everlasting symphony will silence all noise and dissonance. Soon, Lord, please.
It’s because of your mercy and grace for us in Jesus that we freely bring to you the things that have the power to discourage and overwhelm us. Though the details differ from Paul’s story, we too know what it feels like to come to the end of our resources—emotionally, spiritually, and otherwise. So, forsaking self-reliance, we abandon ourselves to the God of resurrection on this Friday.
Father some of us are struggling to love well in messy situations and complex storylines. Some relationships currently feel more like mine-fields than fields of clover. Forsaking the illusion of control, we trust you.
For some of us, vacations haven’t felt very “vacation-y.” Children break arms, temperatures soar, lines are long… Father, we don’t want to be whiners, so grant us grace to accept the things we cannot control.
Some of us stay on edge because of the political madness of our day. With the eye of faith, let us constantly see the occupied throne of heaven.
Some of us are struggling with sleep disorders or aging bodies; others are seeking to love children who seem allergic to your grace, while others are grieving fresh loses or old wounds. Father grant us unusual peace—even a great measure of joy as we reaffirm our trust in you.
Last, but not least, we pray for church planters, missionaries, and pastors. Many are laboring in the face of great pressure and complex challenges. Father grant your servants a profound sense of your nearness and a great supply of the riches of grace. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ triumphant and tender name.