Monthly Archives

September 2018

Lead in Prayer

By | Job Description

Why does this matter?

Prayer is a vital part of our relationship with God as individuals and as a church community. In public prayer you lead us in bringing our corporate concerns to God. What you pray for and how you pray powerfully models how we should relate to God.

What is involved?

  • Join those who are serving up the front in a time of prayer at 10:15am in the auditorium.
  • Know when you are on so there isn’t a gap while we wait for you to walk up the front. If you pray straight after a song it is your job to be there in time to tell people to sit down.
  • Stand in front of the microphone before speaking.
  • Introduce yourself and invite people to join you in prayer.
  • Take a breath and pause to settle yourself. Speak slightly slower than the pace that feels natural.
  • Sit down.

First and Second Prayer

There is a workshop on Leading in Prayer run from time to time. What follows here is a brief summary of how prayer is organised at Scots.

Different elements of Prayer are covered in First and Second Prayer. First Prayer focusses upon Praise/Adoration and Confession. Second Prayer follows the talk and makes specific requests and thanks God for who he is and what he has done.

First Prayer Details

Please compose and pray your own prayer of Praise/Adoration (thanking God for what hes like, perhaps using an idea in the song that immediately precedes your prayer, or from the Bible verse used in the Call to Worship). This prayer should be about 100-250 words long.

Then lead the congregation in prayer of confession. Elvanto will specific whether its Prayer A, B or C, these are set prayers we pray together, or whether its “no set prayer” in which case you are expected to compose and pray your own prayer, in which case your prayer should be about 100-250 words long.

The read out to us the set Word of Assurance – a Bible passage that speaks of God’s forgiveness.

If you don’t wish to use the set prayer, or use a different text for the word of assurance, please check with Craig first.

Second Prayer Details

Each Week in our “Second prayer” should include these 3 things:

  1. Pray for our financial giving (Because we don’t physically take up an offering each Sunday it is even more important that we pray about it, lest our giving become “invisible”. Pray that it will be used for Gods glory and the growing of the gospel.)
  2. Pray in response to the Word. (What can we pray for in the light of the Bible Talk today? What can we thank God for that he has done or promises to do? What can we ask God to change about us in the light of the passage? Talk to the preacher if you need to get a clearer idea on this. Leave space in your notes to jot down 2-3 sentences as you listen.)
  3. Pray for a designated focus area. (Look up the plan in Elvanto for the Sunday you are praying it will say “Second Prayer A” or similar indicating your focus area from the list below:
Week A Pray for the gospel to reach more people in our city. Pray that our church will be effective in reaching people with the gospel and many will become Christians. Pray that we might all be faithful ambassadors for Christ. Pray that we would be effective ambassadors in our workplaces. Pray for CBF and other churches in the city. Pray by name for St Phillps, Vine, and St Andrews Cathedral by name.

Pray and Thank God for our city. Pray for the homeless. Pray for the Bread of Life ministry at Vine Church in Surry Hills (which we partner in). Pray for Stillness in the City (soon to resume.)

Week B Pray for Paul Young and his ministry in Perth. See his latest prayer letter.

Pray and thank God for our interns (by name), for their studies, their ministry at church, their plans for the future. Pray and thank God for our interns (by name), for their studies, their ministry at church, their plans for the future. Pray for the theological colleges in our city to be faithful and effective. Pray that God will raise up more appropriate workers for the harvest both here in Australia and beyond.

Week C Pray for our leaders. Pray for our elders (Gus, David, Joe, and Craig), for our Management Committee. Pray for our Hub Groups (Wed and Thurs) and their leaders. Pray that we will be a church growing deeper in our knowledge, love and obedience.
Week D Pray for our nation. (Include any timely national issues.) Our federal govt and its leaders. Pray for state government.

Pray for universities and those who study and teach in them. Pray for Uni students in our congregation and their witness on campus. Pray for groups (AFES and Power to Change) bringing the gospel to campuses. Pray for ongoing freedom to speak about Christianity on campus.

Week E Thank God for our generational diversity at church and ask that we would be a church learning and modeling the Christian life between generations. Pray for our Kids ministry. For families. Pray for Babies in the City and our plans for a Youth Group. Pray for schools and those who study and teach in them. Give thanks for those who serve in various ways in our church family and pray that church will be equipping people to serve at church and in the world.

Time required: Write your prayer out before Sunday. This could take a while the first time. Your prayer should be about 200-400 words in length. Email your prayer to Craig or the Leader for the day by Thursday lunchtime if you feel the need for feedback. Arrive in time for the group prayer 15 mins before church.

Prayer of Confession A

Please pray your own prayer of Adoration (thanking God for what he is like, perhaps using an idea in the song that immediately precedes your prayer, or from the Bible verse used in the Call to Worship), and then lead the congregation in praying the prayer of confession below. All the text below in blue appears on the screen.

Prayer of Confession A
(Cranmer’s Confession 1552)

Let us confess our sins to God:
Almighty and most merciful Father,
we have erred and strayed from your ways like lost sheep.
We have left undone what we ought to have done,
and we have done what we ought not to have done.
We have not loved you with our whole heart;
we have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.

Have mercy on us:
Forgive us our sins and teach us to forgive others.
Bring forth in us the fruit of the Spirit
that we may live for your glory.
Amen.

Hear these words of assurance from God’s word:

But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53:5-6)

 

 

 

Prayer of Confession B

Please pray your own prayer of Adoration (thanking God for what he is like, perhaps using an idea in the song that immediately precedes your prayer, or from the Bible verse used in the Call to Worship), and then lead the congregation in praying the prayer of confession below. All the text below in blue appears on the screen.

Prayer of Confession B
Augustine’s Confession (adapted) AD 354-430

Let us confess our sins to God:
Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
maker of all things, judge of all people,
we acknowledge with shame the sins we have committed,
by thought, word and deed, against your divine majesty,
provoking your rightful anger against us.

We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of your Son Jesus, have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in your will,
and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name.
Amen.

Hear these words of assurance from God’s word:
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God –  not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

(Eph 2:8-10)

 

 Prayer of Confession (C)

Please pray your own prayer of Adoration (thanking God for what he is like, perhaps using an idea in the song that immediately precedes your prayer, or from the Bible verse used in the Call to Worship), and then lead the congregation in praying the prayer of confession below. All the text below in blue appears on the screen.

Prayer of Confession
John Knox (adapted) 1556 AD

Let us confess our sins to God:
Living God, creator and sustainer of the universe, 

thank you for revealing your love for the world,
by sending your Son to us.

Heavenly Father,
we have taken your goodness for granted.
despite your kindness to us, we have not been faithful to you.
We are not worthy to come into your presence.

Have mercy on us,
and grant us the assurance in our hearts
that in your Son’s sacrifice we are completely forgiven.

Father, by your Holy Spirit,
purify our love for you,
deepen our devotion to your Son,
inspire in us a greater desire to serve your kingdom
and glorify your name,
AMEN

Hear these words of assurance from God’s word:
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.  (John 3:16-18)

 

Some Alternate Prayers of Confession and Words of Assurance

Philip Jensen, Two Ways to Live, 1977
Dear God,
I know that I am not worthy to be accepted by you. I don’t deserve your gift of eternal life. I am guilty of rebelling against you and ignoring you. I need forgiveness. Thank you for sending your son to die for me that I may be forgiven. Thank you that he rose from the dead to give me new life. Please forgive me and change me, that I may live with Jesus as my ruler.
Amen.

Augustine of Hippo (adapted from Confessions) AD 354-430
Creator God,
you have made us for yourself, and hearts will always be restless until they find their rest in you.
O Lord,
The house of my soul is small and narrow;
enlarge it that you may enter in.
It lies in ruins, please repair it.
It is unworthy of your presence, make it clean.
Amen.

Hear these words of assurance from God’s word:

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:8-9)

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! (Rom 5:8-9)