Arise with Pastoral Compassion
As Christians we are never promised that life will be easy. In fact the opposite. It is in the difficulties situations of life that we learn to lean on God’s support, leading and comfort. We are drawn closer into His loving arms and strengthened in our faith. We are also called to love one another and bear one another’s burdens. Our Biblical prayer today is from someone who found God’s help in her anguish.
Reading: Hannah’s Prayer – 1 Samuel 2:1-10
Then Hannah prayed and said:
“My heart rejoices in the LORD;
in the LORD my horn is lifted high.
My mouth boasts over my enemies,
for I delight in Your deliverance.
“There is no one holy like the LORD;
there is no one besides You;
there is no Rock like our God.
“Do not keep talking so proudly
or let your mouth speak such arrogance,
for the LORD is a God who knows,
and by Him deeds are weighed.
“The bows of the warriors are broken,
but those who stumbled are armed with strength.
Those who were full hire themselves out for food,
but those who were hungry are hungry no more.
She who was barren has borne seven children,
but she who has had many sons pines away.
“The LORD brings death and makes alive;
He brings down to the grave and raises up.
The LORD sends poverty and wealth;
He humbles and He exalts.
He raises the poor from the dust
and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
He seats them with princes
and has them inherit a throne of honour.
“For the foundations of the earth are the LORD’s;
on them He has set the world.
He will guard the feet of His faithful servants,
but the wicked will be silenced in the place of darkness.
“It is not by strength that one prevails;
those who oppose the LORD will be broken.
The Most High will thunder from heaven;
the LORD will judge the ends of the earth.
“He will give strength to his king
and exalt the horn of His anointed.”
Within our circle we know of many facing a wide array of pastoral issues and in our world there is so much distress. Spend some time asking for the Holy Spirit’s guidance to bring before the Lord those who need His touch upon their lives. Sometimes when we are overwhelmed a prayer structures by others can be helpful.
Today we use the words of the Psalmist as testimony to God’s help in time of trouble
I waited patiently for the LORD;
He turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the LORD
and put their trust in Him.
Blessed is the one
who trusts in the LORD,
who does not look to the proud,
to those who turn aside to false gods.
Many, LORD my God,
are the wonders You have done,
the things You planned for us.
None can compare with You;
were I to speak and tell of Your deeds,
they would be too many to declare.
The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
He leads me beside quiet waters,
He refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for His name’s sake.
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD