As St. Mark’s Church moves into the next phase of searching for a new Rector, here are a some prayers (from Rob Voyle’s Assessing Skills, Discerning A Call Workbook) that may help bring us strength and clarity:
Almighty God, shine upon us the wisdom of your Incarnate Word as we embark on this journey of discovery. Enkindle in our hearts the fire of your love, that warmed by your presence and inspired by your Spirit we would find your purpose and glorify you in the way we live our lives through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you in the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Almighty God, you have made us your chosen people, not your protected people. Help us be courageous because you are courageous. You have given us a lodging in this world but not an abiding city. Help us in this present moment, as a pilgrim people, to endure hardship and delight in goodness, knowing that at the end of our journey your Christ has prepared a place for us. Amen.
God of peace, keep us from a mindless acceptance of things as they are. Let us all know that at the heart of change and turbulence there is an inner calm that comes from faith in you, and that from this central heart of peace, there may flow a creative compassion, a thirst for justice, a relentless proclamation of your love, and a willingness to give of ourselves in the Spirit of Christ. Amen.
God of grace, you have endowed us with talents and capabilities beyond the imagination of our finite minds. Shed upon us the light of your infinite understanding that we can behold ourselves as you see us, so that we would manifest in the world your hopes and promises and liberally share your love with those we encounter, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Praise to you, Almighty God, for all your work among us. Yours is the vigor of new creation, yours is the impulse in our new discoveries. Give us eyes to see, ears to hear, minds to understand and hearts to hold your love as we seek a new leader, that together with them and You our lives will shine forth with your love, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Eternal God, you have always taken men and women of every nation, age, and color, and made them saints by transforming them in your love. Grant us grace to humbly walk with Jesus, that as we search for the “right” leader we would remember your call to us to be your “right” people, transformed in your grace to love and serve our neighbors as ourselves. Amen.
A Blessing for the Journey of Self Discovery:
The God of Abraham and Sarah call you to your purpose. The Light of Christ shine upon you and scatter the darkness from before your path. The Spirit of Love grant you courage to journey and fulfill your destiny with integrity. And the blessing of God Almighty, Creator, Redeemer and LifeGiving Spirit, be among you, and remain with you now and for ever. Amen.
A Blessing as You Seek God’s Vision:
God the Creator bless you with a vision so that you can look forward to the day when you can look back and behold with wonder the great things you and God have done together. Amen. God the Lover bless you with love to fan the fire of your compassion so that your neighbors will be glad of your presence. Amen.
God the Giver of Life bless you with the living waters of companionship, authenticity, competence, and courage to fulfill your purpose so that following your days on earth you will hear the heavens proclaim: “Well Done!” Amen. And the Eternal God, whose love echoes through the universe, bless you, and all those you love, now and forever. Amen.
A Blessing for the Search:
The God of Truth bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficiality so that you live and make decisions from deep within your heart. Amen.
The God of Understanding make you tender in the face of pain and rejection so that others can know the comfort of your acceptance. Amen.
The God of Justice make you fierce in the face of oppression and exploitation so that others can live with dignity in the midst of your respect. Amen.
The God of all Wisdom bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can lead others to do what many claim cannot be done. Amen.
And the Blessing of God Almighty, Creator, Redeemer, and Life Giving Spirit keep you as Jesus’ friends, in your search for a new leader, and forever. Amen.