First Things First Devotional for Wednesday, May 22
Special Prayer for Oklahoma Tornado Victims from The Presbyterian Church (USA)
O God of love, whose Spirit in creation moved over the face of chaos, bringing life: hear our prayers, as we bear witness this day to the awful power of wind, whose might raged over your people in Moore, Oklahoma, changing lives and landscapes in an instant.
Even now, as first responders still labor to seek those who are lost and comfort those who are grieving, even as stories of terror and hurt are still unfolding,
WE TOUCH YOUR HAND OF MERCY.
In teachers who sheltered with their bodies the children entrusted to their care, as you, O God, like a mother hen spread her wings over her people Israel:
WE SEE YOUR FACE, AND FEEL YOUR TENDER EMBRACE.
In neighbors who rallied to one another’s need, in houses of worship which opened their doors to give shelter, in volunteers who set their personal needs aside to assist those in grave danger and those awaiting a hand of compassion
WE FEEL THE HEART OF YOUR COMPASSION.
In the courageous resolve of first responders, who listen for cries in the dark, dig through the rubble, tenderly bind up wounds and comfort the bereaved,
WE EXPERIENCE THE STEADFASTNESS OF YOUR LOVE.
We are grateful for the signs of your presence in responders, neighbors, strangers and families of faith, who come together as one common body to save, support, and salve the wounds of those who suffer.
FOR ALL THESE VISIBLE SIGNS OF YOUR INVISIBLE GRACE, WE BLESS YOUR NAME.
Our Rock and Redeemer, who from the bonds of death rose to resurrection life for the sake of Love, be a strong presence among those who, having survived this chaos, now face grief, uncertainty and weary days:
BE IN US AND THROUGH OUR PRAYERS AND ACTIONS A SOURCE OF HOLY COMFORT AND A CHANNEL OF HEALING GRACE.
May the PEACE OF GOD move through us, the SUSTAINING POWER OF GOD abide with those who have endured terrors and sorrows and, in the season of rebuilding, may the LIFE OF GOD bring a new divine creation out of formless chaos. In Christ's blessed name. Amen.
Through Cloud and Out of Chaos:
Words To Think About
I don't even know what to say. My thoughts, prayers, concerns, and heartache goes out to my family, friends, and everyone in Oklahoma.
Tweet from Barry Sanders
Heisman Trophy Winner
Rev. Jerry Long
First Presbyterian Church
313 North Patterson Street
Valdosta, GA 31601
Office: (229) 242-8376
Daring To Dream God's Dream™