We are sending love and our prayerful commitment to you during this Coronavirus pandemic. Our common faith and common humanity drive us to this deep solidarity with each other. We are aware of many things right now, some of which might even be considered hidden gifts embedded in this crisis – one I can think of is the blessed amount of time we get with our families. We are tenderhearted about this … our love for our parents and for some of us our spouses, who are particularly vulnerable, our love for our kids, who we worry about, our love for our grandchildren who are learning life lessons in global trauma that are reminiscent of those my grandfather had to learn when he was a child. For such a time as this, we must rely on God and his fatherly love, prayer that sustains us and the witness of each other, all of us who have become first-responders in some way.
Paying attention to the reflections of the saints (through social media primarily), I realized I have joined a chorus of intercessors from around the world who have found the guidance of The Lord’s Prayer, needed now more than ever before.
Jesus meant for this prayer to teach us “how to pray” and I imagine, for the very time we are in right now. He instructs where to start … start with “our Father”, Abba Father, Daddy, who according to the scriptures always gives good gifts to his children. In the midst of this pandemic, how do we locate those good gifts? How do we draw near to our Father who loves us and acknowledges how desperate we are for his provision and protection at this time?
And pray, says Jesus, this way: that God’s kingdom will come and his will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Possibly, there is no greater time when we’ve desired to see God’s kingdom purposes done on earth. How do we participate in that today? What is our exact role, with our structural evils that are so evident and exposed right now? Move us, Lord!
We’re asking for “daily bread” in this prayer. Our community has lost two meals a day for their children. We are participating, alongside other community food banks and the school districts to respond to this painful reality, waiting for the word from any of our families to do more, if need be.
Then Jesus leads us where we must go daily, especially when the world has fallen to its knees. Forgiveness of debts. We owe much to God for his forgiveness of our debts (sins) and this world is considering how to forgive the debts of loans to small businesses (and non-profits), landlords forgiving their tenants lack of payment, the electric company choosing not to shut off their clients lights. How does this time we are in teach us how to forgive each other? How desperate we have become for reconciliation, for unity, for peace? When Oh Lord, will we forgive each other?
A pandemic brings evil into focus. How we long to be delivered from this evil. So, we pray for that deliverance. And the entrapment this evil brings with it, the temptations to live in fear, the temptations to isolate from human suffering, the temptations to further marginalize the vulnerable …
We enter into hope and confident expectation when we pray The Lord’s Prayer. For the Lord has the final word, his power, his kingdom, his glory has the final word. He is in control and His love wins.
One thing is certain, OUR FATHER will carry us through these next months of uncertainty. Remember, we want to pray for you during these difficult days. Please let us.
And join us in the journey. We really need your support in these trying days.
God bless you,
P.S. To check out Neighborhood Ministries’ response to the COVID 19 pandemic click here.
And don’t forget to visit our prayer request page. We would love to pray specifically for you.