Prayer following elders' statements of belief
Father, we begin our prayer by giving you all glory and honor for the benefaction you've given us, the grace and mercy you've shown us in Jesus Christ. We are truly thankful for the life you've enacted for us through his death and resurrection. We humble ourselves before you and lift you up for opening to us the way of salvation, which we could not open for ourselves. Thank you, God, thank you.
Thank you, God, for our shepherds, who seek to be guided by the Holy Spirit and not blown about by the winds of worldly thinking—winds that sometimes feel like pretty strong gusts.
We are thankful that they wish to tether themselves to the Word, Jesus Christ, and to your written word, the Bible, in spite of the fact that the world around us is becoming more and more antagonistic toward those who do so.
And we are thankful to you, God, for our shepherds' humility. Unlike so many leaders who are driven by an insatiable desire for power and control, our shepherds kneel before you and seek guidance from you, as these statements of belief indicate. Their humility is also demonstrated by their willingness to open space for dialogue around these statements, inviting, as they have, further conversation. Please, God, direct these conversations in the ways of love, peace, and unity.
It is our prayer, O God, that you would touch all of us—not just our shepherds, but all of us—with your Holy Spirit as we, as the Springs church, seek to discern even the deep and mysterious things of God, and to truly understand what it means to live in a way that honors you and in a way that proclaims the message of crucified and resurrected Messiah and all that message entails--even if the world thinks that message is foolish.
Father, it is our hope that those of us who make up the Springs church are unified, that we all "say the same," as the apostle Paul put it to the Corinthians, that there would be no divisions among us, but that we would all be bound together in the same spirit and the same purpose.
This is our prayer, Father, in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Spoken by Jim Dvorak following statement from the Springs Elders.