Lord, Have Mercy: A Prayer for Our Time

Our Father in heaven,

We do not come to you lightly today. Our world is on its knees before you. You are holy, and the nations are like a drop in a bucket. We recognize anew the frailty of our bodies, our lungs, our governments, our economies. We confess that we need you.

Father, we ask you for your mercy. Have mercy on our world. Have mercy on this nation. Have mercy on your people calling on your name.

We don’t ask because we deserve it. We ask because we’re your kingdom of priests. Even if our world does not turn to you, we are turning to you on their behalf, and our own. Please slow and stop the spread of this virus. Please preserve lives and health and jobs and all that we now see is so vulnerable.

Thank you, Father, for your common grace helping us navigate these days. Thank you for science, for leaders, for data, for the vast technologies that connect us. Thank you for bringing us together in new ways through these very gifts.

We have much to bring before you. We beg your peace for all who are sick with anxiety and fear. We ask your forgiveness for judging one another. We plead your strength for those already worn down.

We pray for our leaders, as you’ve commanded us. Please give your wisdom and strength to President Trump and Vice President Pence, to all three branches of our government, to our governors and mayors, to our health officials and school leaders and economic advisors. Help them not to under-react or overreact but only to do what’s best as your assigned stewards in this generation.

We pray for the doctors and nurses in our congregation and around the world. Please protect their bodies and their families. Give them the supernatural strength we all need them to have during these times.

We pray for our senior saints, and all those at greatest risk, that you would protect their bodies and their faith. Help us encourage and serve them in ways large and small, just as they have given their lives to lead and serve us for so long.

We pray for those among us who must wonder and worry about their jobs. Please help them work each day unto you, and trust you with the future. Creatively provide what they need through the kindness and generosity of others, and give us all the rich opportunity to share what we have.

We pray for every parent who’s overwhelmed, every child who’s antsy, every marriage that’s strained, every single man or woman or widow or widower who’s lonely. Please provide each of your children exactly what we need today, and help us leave tomorrow in your hands.

Please give your church discernment, that we might make wise decisions. Make us proactive about connecting in safe and creative ways. Show us how we can love without endangering others, and how we can serve our world in these unique times.

We are asking for many things, and we deserve none of them. So we are asking for grace. We’ve earned nothing, and we can pay nothing. We’re just asking.

But we’re asking boldly, because we know you have a plan. We know you’re doing something we wouldn’t believe if you told us. We know you’re shaking the nations, and humbling kings, and crushing our idols, and refining your church. We know that your gospel is not bound, and your Word not silent.

So help us to join in your work, O God, whatever our role may be. Even if we are only to be humble, to watch, and to wait, make us watch and wait. Only let us see with your eyes, and come to share your heart.

Let your kingdom come, and your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Through Christ we pray,