Lord of heaven and earth, we worship you both as the Almighty God, and Lord of a world where suffering and injustice are widespread.
Grant us the courage to enter to the story of Job.
In a world that longs for stability, where chaos threatens, where we fear and are taught to fear to excess, we pray for a true insight of the world as it is. Help us to appreciate the good our governments promote, and to hold them account for any injustices ignored. We pray that those with power are constrained to wield it with justice, and those robbed of all power are properly heard. In a world of chaos, we long for order.
Where we shun any hint of suffering ourselves, and so easily turn a blind eye to the suffering of others, we pray for those who feels themselves forgotten, downtrodden and betrayed. We pray for those who can find no meaning to attach to their suffering. Forgive us for offering shallow solutions and pat answers, and free us simply to enter into the suffering of another with true compassion. In a world of suffering, we long for true consolation.
In a world where public opinion can be shaped, where indoctrination takes many forms, where ideologies are mistaken for common sense, show us how to love you not only with our heart, our strength and our souls, but with our minds. Grant us the discernment to see and feel the world as you might see and feel it. In a world of confusion, we long for insight.
In a world where war is not always a last resort, where it is easier to criticise others than to discuss, easier to hate an enemy than to hear them: grant us the courage to ask difficult questions of ourselves and others, and of our governments and others. In a world of hostility, we long for shalom.
Lord of stability and chaos, Lord of continuity and contrast, may your people encounter you as the Good shepherd, a source of care and security, of future and of hope.