Morning Prayer Friday, 14 May 2021
Good morning Cornerstone Friends as we reach the mid-point of May.
Like the trees moving into the full green of their summer clothing,
our lives are moving into more sociability – another small step towards full communion.
Let’s welcome the day and its opportunities!
Refreshing Spirit of God, we welcome this day of fresh opportunity
and all the new experiences it will bring.
Thank you for your protection through the night and the gift of refreshing rest.
Inspire us to meet our daily round with joy and enthusiasm
that we may demonstrate your healing power in our world.
Yesterday was Ascension Day, the beginning of a time of transition for the followers of Jesus
– a day of moving from the accomplishment of Christ
to the application of that victory to everyone through the coming Spirit.
Taking the good news from a hillside in Bethany to a timeless stream of active believers.
Think of some ‘days after’ great personal events –
the day after a family wedding or the day after a new baby comes home.
That’s the feeling of the disciples on that day.
The eleven had witnessed Jesus’ departure and they were a bit dumbstruck.
The two men in white knocked them out of that reverie:
‘Why are you hanging about here,’ they asked,
‘staring at an empty sky with wide eyes and open mouths?
Get on with what you are supposed to be doing!’
Their first task, then, was to repair their fellowship with a replacement for Judas:
to find someone else who had made the whole journey with Jesus,
from John’s Baptism to the Ascension, to be another witness,
to make it a day of new beginnings.
As they began to re-group they must have had endless discussions
of how they could go about spreading the good news of Christ’s Resurrection
without the proof of the man himself, who had told them to wait
for an unseen, untouchable gift to arrive,
who had told them to anticipate a life of unknown opportunity.
Refreshing Spirit of God, we pray for a world in need of refreshment.
Infuse our troubled world with a new urge for harmony and peaceful discussion,
far away from outright war, especially needful in Israel and Palestine.
Touch the people of power and wealth with generosity
so the whole world may benefit from the accomplishments of the vaccine scientists.
Open the eyes of the despoilers to the damage being done to earth and air and water
that they may understand the value of this place we call home and turn their ways to protection.
In Jesus’ name we pray that this may be a day of fresh insight and new beginnings.
Now we are at our own time of transition as a country, as a community and as a fellowship.
We begin to come together indoors, to visit friends and family,
to start again, to begin to make a new normal.
How will we move forward in witness; how can we make this a time of new beginning for everyone,
a time of transition from the way things were to the way they should be?
For this time there is no roadmap, no eternal commandment,
only a time of opportunity, a time for growth. In the words of Isaiah:
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me
because he has anointed me.
He has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
to bind up the broken-hearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
To proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour, to comfort all who mourn,
To give them a garland
instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness
instead of mourning,
the mantle of praise
instead of a faint spirit,
That they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord,
that he may be glorified.
For as the earth puts forth her blossom,
and as seeds in the garden spring up,
So shall the Lord God make righteousness
and praise blossom before all the nations.
Isaiah 61: 2–3 & 11
Refreshing Spirit of God bless us all today with your gifts of comfort and relief.
We pray for people we know in need of physical consolation and a calm spirit,
especially Eric, Joan, Sue and Joy.
Refreshing Spirit of God bless us with power to live as people on fire
with your mission to heal the world, to bring garlands of joy to people who mourn.
Make us like the trees of our city,
breaking forth in fresh green and full flower to your praise and glory.
On this Friday morning, walk with us out the door and into the world wherever that may take us.
Let us begin this day as we mean to go on – as people awake and refreshed,
ready for whatever may come about, in the name of God, Father Son and Holy Spirit.