Merciful and Mighty

A pastoral prayer

A pastoral prayer delivered on June 9, 2024, at Grace Bible Church in Escondido, California.

Our God, we praise your holy name this morning. You are merciful and mighty, God in three persons, blessed Trinity. We join our voices with the angels in heaven and all your people throughout the world, to declare that there is no one like you, perfect in power, love, and purity.

You are a God who creates and carries and saves. You have loved us from before we ever took a breath. You’ve carried us from the time we were in our mothers’ wombs. You will carry us until we breathe our last in this world.

Father, forgive us for putting our trust and hope in things that are not God – our ability to plan for the future, our bank accounts, our careers. Our hearts wander so easily from a simple, childlike trust in you. Our idols always let us down, but we keep returning to them.

Forgive us, Father. Cleanse us from our sins, as you’ve promised in Christ. Renew us. Let us taste and see that you are good. Bind our wandering hearts to yours. Let us bask in the light of your grace. Let us rest in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Father, we come before you as your own people today — the people you’ve rescued and redeemed through your Son. Comfort those with tender consciences. Let them know deep in their soul that Christ has paid it all. Let them feel it in their bones. Quiet their accusing hearts with your tender love.

Give hope to those who are weighed down by grief, by loss, by disappointment — those who know firsthand that this world is not the way it should be. Let them see glimmers of hope. Help them to know and believe that the darkness and brokenness are passing away. Help them to trust that you will flood their lives, and the whole earth, with your glory one day.

Father, you are the God who measured the waters in the hollow of his hand. You marked off the heavens. You weighed the mountains in scales. Your wisdom and power are unmatched. But so often we doubt that you’ll show up in our lives with your power. Help our unbelief.

You call each and every one of the billions of stars by name. Not one sparrow falls to the ground apart from your will. You clothe the wildflowers with such breathtaking beauty. And your Son told us that we are more valuable to you than them all. Let us know and trust and rest in your loving heart. Calm our fears. Quiet our worries. Increase our joy, not because our circumstances have turned for the better, but because you have promised never to leave us nor forsake us.

You, Father, are the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. You never tire. You never go to sleep on us. You give power to the weary and strength to the weak. Renew our strength, as we wait for you. Meet us in our weakness with fresh grace.

Lead our hearts into the wonderful depths of your love and the steadfastness of our Lord Jesus Christ. He ransomed us with his precious blood. He crushed the power of sin and death. His faithfulness is our standing place. Help us to trust that our feet are held firm by his grace, so that we might glory in our Redeemer, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.