Thursday, April 16, 2020

COVID-19 series, #19: A pastoral prayer in the midst of COVID-19

19 Pastoral Thoughts on COVID-19

“Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, Lord. Repeat them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy” (Habakkuk 3:2).

I end my 19 pastoral thoughts on COVID-19 today with a word of prayer. Let us pray:

Our glorious Heavenly Father, we worship you as the Creator of the entire universe and the Governor of all history. You sit on the throne that is encircled by thousands of angels in holy wonder. In the midst of this current global crisis, we pause to acknowledge you as God.

We humble ourselves and confess our individual and corporate sins to you, O God. We have turned your worship into entertainment. We have trampled your righteous laws underfoot. We have idolised the acquisition of wealth and silently butchered the unborn in the womb.

Lord, we thank you that you are a forgiving God. You sent your son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to pay the awful price for our sin by his suffering and death on the cross. Help us, dear Lord, to share this good news with our friends and neighbours in the midst of today’s misery.

As the Coronavirus rampages through the land, from east to west and from north to south, we plead with you in the words of Habakkuk, “In wrath remember mercy.” Do not treat us as our sins deserve because, if you do, there will be none left to worship you on earth.

Lord, when you send temporal judgments on us, it is to bring us to repentance so that we are not judged in wrath in eternity. By your Spirit, comfort the sorrowing, teach us the spiritual lessons you want us to learn, and bring this crisis to a close. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!

“We have not known Thee as we ought,
Nor learned Thy wisdom, grace and power;
The things of earth have filled our thought,
And trifles of the passing hour:
Lord, give us light Thy truth to see,
And make us wise in knowing Thee.”
—Thomas B Pollock (1836–1896)