Opening prayer 28 February 2016

Gardening God

the wonder of your world is all around us

we see the beginnings of new life busting forth in your world

the buds on the trees, warmed by the sun, beginning to open

the birds singing your praises and to one another, as they start to nest

the snowdrops offer a splash of wonder, showing once again winter is ending

we never cease to be amazed at the way the plants and animals know when to burst into new life

triggered by the lengthening days

in a pattern of life you wove into creation

there is a richness and intricate pattern, which you have invited us to be part of

but though we plant and sow and plough, we do not ripen the fruit, we do not grow the grain, we do not produce the potato

we are merely servants in your garden, the garden of your creation

and we bow in awe that we are invited to be part of growing your kingdom, and growing provision for your people

we bow in awe that all would be in vain without your gardening and farming skills

we bow in awe that you wish us to seek you always

and this hour, in worship, in prayer, in song and word, this is our deepest desire, to listen to your invitation to your banquet, where out thirst and hunger for you will be satisfied

but our Heavenly King

your call to the thirsty and hungry is not just for us, is it?

Your call is for all the peoples to be filled with your goodness

yet we can be guilty of setting limits on who can be part of your kingdom

or we forget your banquet is a rich feast for all

not just the leftover scraps, or the supermarket basics which fill the stomach but offer little pleasure

or we assume people’s circumstances are your blessing for their faithfulness or your curse for their sinfulness

Christ our Lord

this was not the kingdom you revealed

it was not the path of discipleship you taught

so come, through your holy spirit to guide and show us change our hearts and minds towards you and you alone

and may we know, once more, your ways are not our ways and that through your self giving love

we are forgiven, we are pardoned and set free to follow the path you taught us

Now and always