Fifth Sunday in Lent

March 26, 2023

Rejoice in the Lord! Sing to him a new song, for the word of the Lord is upright and all his work is done in faithfulness.
The earth is full of God’s unfailing love.
Truly the eye of the Lord is on those who honor him, on those who hope in his steadfast love.
May God’s faithful love be upon us, even as we hope in him.
—from Psalm 33

O God of our lives, in the words of our Lord Jesus Christ you guide us on our path. In the cross, you assure us that you are with us, even in the most difficult times. And in his rising, you promise us life everlasting. Through our worship this morning, may we learn your will, feel your presence, and embrace your promises; for we ask this in Jesus’ Name, who taught us to pray.

O God of hope, we are gathered in your presence, your people waiting for you, longing for your wholeness. We live in a troubled time—a time of war and injustice, a time of strife among people who should be united. Help us to recognize our part in the troubles of the world, and show us your forgiving love. And as your people, made in your image, help us to forgive others as you forgive us.

We lift up to you our own needs and the needs of our loved ones. We pray for healing and comfort in our church family. We pray for the needs of our community. Keep our neighbors safe from the threats of those who are filled with hatred. And we pray for those who are more distant— those who have been devastated by storm and earthquake, those who live in war zones, those who are fleeing violence and seeking refuge far from their homes.

Thank you God for the assurance that you love us, that you forgive us, and that you listen to our prayers. We ask not only that you answer us, but that you give us the strength, courage, and wisdom to be part of the answer to our own prayers. As Christ loved us, may we love others selflessly, for it is in his Name that we pray. Amen.

We praise and thank you, all-powerful and everlasting God. You give us blessings beyond our ability to count them, and you offer us guidance and forgiveness throughout our lives. As we return to you these our gifts, we pray that you will accept them to your use and us to your service in in the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

And now, may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by God's power. Go forth in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 
—based on Romans 15:13