Lord Jesus Christ,
who teaches us to love our enemies,
and those who defame and injure us,
and to pray for them and forgive them;
Who also prayed for your enemies, who crucified you:
grant us, we pray, the spirit of reconciliation and meekness,
that we may heartily forgive every injury
and be reconciled with our enemies.
Grant us to overcome the malevolence and offenses
of people with meekness and true love of our neighbor.
O Lord, grant to our enemies true peace and forgiveness of sins;
and do not allow them to leave this life without true faith and sincere conversion.
And help us repay evil with goodness, and to remain safe from the temptations of the devil and from all the perils which threaten us, in the form of visible and invisible enemies.
Let us never forget that you are with us, now and forever.
Our peace, our comfort and our hope.
In prayer, let us confess to God as a community.
The LORD is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD
— Psalm 23
Who are your enemies?
What would it look like to love them this week?
Name them and pray for the ability to love them this week.
May we go forth into the world in peace;
being of good courage
and holding fast to what is good.
May we render to no one evil for evil,
instead strengthening the faint-hearted;
supporting the weak
and help the afflicted.
May we honor everyone
and love and serve the Lord,
rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit.
May we be his church and his people.
We go forth in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Go in peace and live the church.
See you throughout the week.
[Photo by evanistan @ Flickr]