Desert Places



God of heaven and earth: God who made the universe beyond our knowing and the hairs on our head, we are told to believe that you are everywhere; but so often, and for so many, it feels like you have withdrawn.


For the people of Japan, for those still hoping for good news of friends and relatives; for those suffering the effects of radiation; for those already grieving; for those feeling the effects of hunger and thirst; for all living in a desert from which you have withdrawn.  Come to us, we pray)


For those in Libya; for those living with injustice in Palestine; in Myan Mar; in Indonesia; in Sri Lanka; countless places and people, living in a desert from which you seem to be absent.  Come to us, we pray.


For the church and our church; facing pressure from beyond; discord from within, when our churches feel like a desert place from which you have withdrawn.  Come to us, we pray.


For ourselves, our families and friends, when loneliness, fear, shame and anxiety and busyness take root, and you seem to have withdrawn from us.  Come to us, we pray.


Lord, in our world, in our church, in our lives, when it seems to us that you have withdrawn, Make yourself known to us afresh.  Make your presence felt anew.  Make it true for us, for our church, for our world, that your name is Emmanuel, God with us,


Because that is the name in which we pray.