Prayer and Spirituality Matters - 28 March
Prayer and Spirituality MattersWelcome again to our regular prayer resource, where you will find:
1) a reading to reflect on over this week. You can also watch and listen to it by following this link
2) a story of hope
Overall, the aim is to encourage us to join together in prayer, for ourselves and others, so we can all experience the power of the living Christ and the transforming grace of God. We may each also find that we are moved to live more in common with our our neighbours, supporting them as they support us.
At times we may feel utterly helpless, but through our faith we know a God who is with us always. We can talk to a loving, powerful and present God and he hears and responds to what we say.
A Passage from ScriptureYou are my God. I worship you.
In my heart, I long for you,
as I would long for a stream
in a scorching desert.
I have seen your power
and your glory
in the place of worship.
Your love means more
than life to me,
and I praise you.
As long as I live,
I will pray to you.
I will sing joyful praises
and be filled with excitement
like a guest at a banquet.
Our reflection and response this week is based on one from the Bible Society :
https://www.biblesociety.org.uk/explore-the-bible/lyfe/daily-lyfe/thirsty/ Thank you.
In his book Hearing God, Dallas Willard writes: ‘Few people arise in the morning as hungry for God as they are for cornflakes or toast and eggs.’ Here the psalmist uses the metaphor of water in a hot dry desert to express his desire and longing for God’s presence. This is a psalm of David who may be on the run in the desert. His lament turns to gratitude as he recalls his experiences of God in public worship.
RespondWhen you have your first cup of tea, coffee or glass of water in the morning, let it prompt you to pray this phrase: ‘My soul thirsts for God, the living God.’ (from Psalm 42)Meditate‘Each day take a moment to say out loud"
O God, I have tasted Thy goodness, and it has both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more. I am painfully conscious of my need for further grace. I am ashamed of my lack of desire. O God, the Triune God, I want to want Thee; I long to be filled with longing; I thirst to be made more thirsty still. Show me Thy glory, I pray Thee, so that I may know Thee indeed. Begin in mercy a new work of love within me. Say to my soul, ‘Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away.’ Then give me grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wandered so long.’Reflect
At the end of each day, quietly say these words:
I think about you
before I go to sleep,
and my thoughts turn to you
during the night.
You have helped me,
and I sing happy songs
in the shadow of your wings.
I stay close to you,
and your powerful arm
This month, please pray for all those who have lost loved ones because of the virus, those who are sick and all in our NHS and associated services caring for them
Please pray for our community, all those in the City as well as those all around the UK
Please pray for all those in need, the lonely and suffering around the world
Please pray for yourself, that you will continue to hear and be guided by God as to how He wants you to use the gifts He has given you, how you are to be a blessing and great witness to all around you. Amen
A story of hope - How to help food banks during the coronavirus outbreakOur story today is from an article in the Guardian because those of us who are well and not classed as vulnerable need to be the ones offering hope/. The need for supplies to food banks is greater than ever. From donating goods and money to volunteering, there are many ways to contribute.
Volunteer to support your local community during the Coronavirus outbreakAway from the stockpiling hordes, food bank workers are toiling tirelessly to make sure that no one goes hungry during the coronavirus pandemic.
“It’s really concerning,” says Emma Revie, the chief executive of the Trussell Trust, the UK’s largest network of food banks. “We are anticipating a significant increase in users as more people are unable to work.”
The trust will continue to support communities during the outbreak. “We will stay open,” she says. “Food banks are an essential community service.” But she says the government needs to do more. “Our benefit system should be a life raft in times of crisis.”
How can you best support your local food bank? If you are not in an at-risk group and have time on your hands, volunteer. More than 30% of the trust’s project managers are 65 or older, which makes them more vulnerable to coronavirus. “We are definitely in need of additional volunteers,” Revie says. “One of our biggest threats is people becoming unwell and unable to volunteer.” You can sign up to volunteer here.
Keep donating, too: your donation is needed now more than ever. (Your local food bank may not be in the trust’s network.) “Check with your local food bank to see what they are in need of,” says Revie. “It will vary from day to day.”
If you are self-isolating, make a financial donation online instead – the food writer Jack Monroe has started a GoFundMe for the trust, or you can donate directly. Revie says they are working with supermarkets to protect the supply to their food banks.
She emphasises that, so far, the public has stepped up. “I want to say thank you,” she says. “People are continuing to donate food and money. The fact that people are still considering how to support their local food banks during this time is a credit to the British public.”
Go to the website for various digital resources. More added all the time. Click here
If you have specific prayer needs, for you or loved ones, do get in touch for confidential prayer support. Also, any suggestions on how this prayer letter can be improved please email your ideas.
Fr Nick (and all the ministry team)
St Katharine Cree, 86 Leadenhall Street, London, EC3A 3BP https://stkatharinecree.com/
& St Olave's Church, 8 Hart Street. http://saintolave.com/
Vestry: 020 7488 4318