Prayer

“The thing to remember is not to read so much or talk so much about God, but to talk to God. To practice the presence of God.”

Dorothy Day, Catholic Pacifist, Journalist, & Women’s Rights Activist

Prayer calls us to be real with God and with ourselves. Authenticity is a form of resistance against superficial faith and unexamined questions. In her book Joy Unspeakable, Barbara Holmes reminds us that “activism and contemplation are not functional opposites.” If we pursue justice without attending to the inner journey, we are more likely to do harm. Resisting harm means resisting the harm that we ourselves can do, as well as the harm done by others. Because we belong to a Church that is discriminatory against LGBTQ persons and other marginalized groups, we belong to a system of harm that we have the power and agency to resist.

We must root our lives in our concrete experience of God’s love in us or we may mirror the very systems of domination and oppression we resist.

Non-violent resistance leader and anti-colonialist Mahatma Gandhi emphasized that “prayer is the heart of resistance.” We join Gandhi and many other resistance leaders in emphasizing prayer as both a spiritual discipline and a form of resistance.

Authentic prayer is opening to God’s gracious presence with all that we are, what Scripture summarizes as our whole heart, soul, and mind (Matthew 22:37). Therefore, prayer is more a way of being than an isolated act of doing… Prayer is aimed at our deepest problem: our tendency to forget our liberating connectedness with God… Prayer also arises from our deepest hope: for the abundance of life that comes when we abide in our deepest home, our widest consciousness. Prayer is our bridge to Home.

Tilden Edwards, Theologian

Extended Season of Love

Prayers for November 2020

Prayer is an active and consequential form of transformative spiritual work in resisting injustice and seeking God’s shalom. As the ResistHarm movement leans into an extended Season of Love, the following prayers are offered for use as a weekly guide to prompt and enrich our prayer life as a means of grace.

November 1st-7th

Prayer Focus: that our LGBTQIA+ siblings would know that they are deeply loved by God.

Wondrous God, send your healing to all those hurt by people claiming to be your followers. We pray especially for LGBTQIA persons here and around the world - that they would know their intrinsic worth and that the church would become a place where all are welcomed, affirmed, celebrated, and cherished.

In the name of the one who is Love, Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

November 8th-14th

Prayer Focus: that God’s perfect love might drive out our fears and anxieties in this season of uncertainty.

Holy God, whose love is like no other, unclench the fists of our hearts, that we may both accept your love and offer love to others. Especially in this time, may your love so flood our hearts that there is no longer room for fear or anxiety to dwell there. Come, and set us free to love like you love.

In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.

November 15th-21st

Prayer Focus: that the decisions of the denomination would be grounded in and guided by love.

Holy God, speak to your people, for we are listening. Open our ears, that, amidst the chaos of the world, we may hear your guiding voice. May love be the ground upon which we walk, and the light which illuminates our path forward.

In the name of Jesus, Amen.

November 22nd-28th

Prayer Focus: that all people would grow in love for God and neighbor.

Gracious God, you call us from death to life.
When we isolate ourselves,
you gently remind us that we are never alone.
When we assume that no-one else understands what we are facing,
You open our eyes to others on the same journey.
We confess that we do not always seek to love our neighbors as ourselves,
even (and perhaps especially) those who do not hold the same beliefs that we do.
In this season, soften our hearts.
Help us to care for others in a way that reflects Your care for all people.
And in doing so, may our own hearts be transformed so that we may better follow You.
In Christ we pray.
Amen.

November 29th-December 5th

Prayer Focus: that love would be recognized and celebrated by all who encounter it.

Holy God, creator of love, we praise you and thank you that love exists in the world and that we get to experience it! Help us to seek out love wherever it exists, and to honor it and celebrate it when it is found, even and especially when its presence surprises us.

In the name of Jesus we pray, Amen.

Prayer Guides

These prayers were written by the Resist Harm Prayer Team. You are welcome to share these prayers, but please cite the #ResistHarm movement with a link back to this page on our website.

Prayer of Resistance

Pray For all God’s people, that we may have the courage to resist. For the Church, that we may resist the temptation to settle for easy answers to hard questions. For our LGBTQIA+ siblings that they may draw strength from the willingness or all God’s people to stand together to resist the forces of exclusion […]
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Prayer of Lament

Pray With those affected by legislated horror because of their gender identity or sexual orientation; With those who lament inability to serve a church as a pastor because of whom they love; With people of color who face micro-and-macro aggressions day in and day out; With those who lament their decision to cross into this […]
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Prayer of Light

Pray With those affected by natural disasters With those who are in their own dark night of the soul With those who see no hope or light With those around the world weary and searching for hope throughout years of war and disease With those who don’t see God’s promise of resurrection With those trapped […]
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Prayer of Witness

Pray With those who have another year for preparing to serve as delegates to General Conference, that they may have patience in this time of waiting; With those who live in places where it is unsafe to claim the name of Christ; With those struggling to live Jesus’ way in places where money, power, greed, […]
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Prayer Tips & Resources

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