BIBLE READING – DANIEL CHAPTER 9 vs 3-23
A prayer TO PRAY for new heart to pray this Palm Sunday
who hears our prayers,
we ask as your people across Ireland call out to you,
that you would hear and answer our cries.
Forgive us for our prayerlessness,
how too often we thought ourselves:
too busy to pray,
able to manage on our own,
in no need of you as our lives trundled on through their well-worn routines.
In this moment of fear and uncertainty,
this shuddering interruption to daily life,
the stillness of lockdown,
the loss of so much that we have taken for granted,
open our hearts to you in prayer,
give us fresh voice in prayer,
impress upon us your greater willingness to answer than our eagerness to ask.
Help us to take confidence in your promises that:
as we ask it will be given to us,
as we seek we will find,
as we knock the door will be opened to us.
Show mercy in these days of suffering and death.
Shed your light in our darkness.
Supply grace sufficient to meet our need.
This Palm Sunday give us cause to cry with those that first Easter week,
‘Hosanna to the Son of David!’
‘Blessed he is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’
‘Hosanna in the highest!’
as we experience King Jesus stooping down,
with meekness and majesty,
- Pray for protection of healthcare workers from severe illness and that the personal protective equipment will be effective.
- Pray for the protection of first responders eg ambulance personnel and for GPs, receptionists, pharmacists.
- Pray for health workers who are caring for those with COVID-19. Pray for their protection from the virus, for stamina during long and intense work hours, and for safe protocols to be observed in healthcare institutions in order to keep them protected.
- Pray for doctors, nurses and medical researchers, that through their skill and insights many will be restored to health.
- Pray for health workers to seek the Lord during this crisis.
Our Congregations and God’s People
- Pray for the body of Christ worldwide, that the church would rise up to pray and to support the sick and their caregivers in practical and sacrificial ways.
- Pray for the church to be a light on a hill in hospitals, communities and cities where God has placed them. Pray for an outpouring of love, compassion and service, in Jesus’ name.
- Thank God for the many ministers, elders and others within congregations who have made a commitment to phone church members on a regular basis to bring hope and encouragement.
- Pray that all the livestreaming of congregational worship, posts on social media, and phone calls would be used by God to speak into people’s lives and that those who as yet do not profess faith in Jesus would find a saviour.
- Pray for our global mission workers throughout the world, especially in areas with high rates of infection. May God give them words of hope and equip them to love and serve those around them.
- Pray for those worldwide who have to live in close proximity being mindful particularly of those in slum areas, and unable to practice the protocols of social distancing: Protect them from disease and provide isolation shelters in every city.
Sick and those Self-Isolating
- Pray for those who are sick, that they will have access to the care and treatment they need.
- Pray for peace and perseverance amidst suffering.
- Pray for those in isolation who are cut off from their normal routines and support systems, that they would seek their strength in Jesus.
- Pray for encouragement for the thousands in quarantine, waiting to find out if they have the virus.
- Pray for people spending time in quarantine or self-isolation, that they might receive the support they need, and that they might stay safe.
- Praise God for the commitment and patience of those in voluntary isolation, that they will play a real part in slowing the spread of the virus.
Wider Medical Issues
- Pray for time and adequate resources for health services to prepare and increase capacity of hospital beds and of intensive care beds.
- Pray for hugely expanded facilities and capabilities, including rapid training of staff to gain the necessary extra skills to work safely outside their normal practice.
- Pray that those who are stepping up to new roles are protected from fear and may put themselves forward for such roles.
- Pray that there might be a plentiful supply of the necessary equipment eg drugs and consumables: ventilators, monitors, oxygen, pumps, gloves and aprons.
- Pray that there would be a huge reduction in demand for other types of hospital and community services during this crisis.
- Pray for our scientific community leading the charge to understand the disease and communicate its gravity. Ask God to give them knowledge, wisdom and a persuasive voice.
- Pray for many in the community who are anxious and fearful, especially those who fear for their loved ones in treatment.
- Pray for protection of the vulnerable, including those who live in nursing homes and other institutions.
- Pray for grieving families who have lost loved ones to the coronavirus. Even as their hearts are breaking, pray they would know the nearness and comfort of the Holy Spirit. Pray that they would feel compassion from the Lord and from friends and neighbours coming around them.
- Pray against despair; pray for new mercies every morning.
- Pray for young people – some who are anxious about their education, for others who might succumb to despair and yet more who may have lost family members to the virus. Pray for hope and purpose in Jesus.
- Pray that God would step in to stem the spreading of this virus and reduce the suffering and distress that has been caused to so many.
- Pray that God might use such a time as this to arouse people’s longings that they might find their source of true comfort in Jesus
- Pray for Christians in every neighbourhood, community and city: May the Holy Spirit inspire them to pray, to give, to love, to serve, and to proclaim the gospel, that the name of Jesus Christ might be glorified around the world.
- Pray that those who are ill will be healed and pray that God will bless the work of the people and organisations who are working on a treatment.
National Issues and Life at Home
- Pray for National Repentance and a turning back to the Lord seeking His forgiveness and mercy for our national sinfulness.
- Pray that our leaders would receive wisdom from God and that the necessary decisions they have to make would be ethical and good for everyone.
- Pray specifically that our governments would have good advisers who will help them to navigate these troubling times.
- Pray for workers in a variety of industries facing layoffs and financial hardship that they be kept from panic and that your church may generously support them.
- Pray for families with young children at home for the foreseeable future. Help mothers and fathers to partner together creatively for the care and flourishing of their children. Especially pray for single mothers and fathers who must find this period exceptionally difficult.