According to your word (a prayer for pastors)

One: Here am I, the servant of the Lord.
Many: Let it be with me according to your word.

One: Here we are, O God, your servants, seeking to understand what you want for us, and what you want from us. You wend your way into our lives, sometimes a lightning bolt, or a whispered breeze, the ray of sunshine piercing through forest cover, the full moon illuminating waves as they break on the shore. We feel you before we know you fully.

One: Here am I, the servant of the Lord.
Many: Let it be with me according to your word.

One: Here we are, O God, your servants, moved to consider new possibilities for being useful to you, making ourselves useful on your behalf. You change our lives, sometimes through the aha! in lines of scripture or the evocative phrase in a poem, words leaping off a page, supernaturally bold-faced.

One: Here am I, the servant of the Lord.
Many: Let it be with me according to your word.

One: Here we are, O God, your servants, aware there are many ways to serve you, and wondering if we have found the right ones. We consider possibilities for ministry: accompanying your children throughout their lives, while offering a good word, marking them as yours, breaking bread and pouring cup, providing care in times of illness and loss, organizing to take the world as it is and make it what you would have it be.

One: Here am I, the servant of the Lord.
Many: Let it be with me according to your word.

One: Here we are, O God, your servants, looking for signs. How will we know when we have found the path laid out for us? Will there be angel song in the sanctuary, or the nodding head of a friend across the table in a coffee shop? Will we feel serene and purposeful, or a little sick to our stomachs? Give us the courage of Mary, who was brave enough to question an angel and faithful enough to give her life to your service. Let it be with us according to your word, we pray in the name of Jesus Christ, who taught us to pray saying:

Our Father, etc.


This prayer, based on Luke 1:26-38, was offered at the closing worship service of “Here Am I: Women Responding to God’s Call,” a conference co-hosted by The Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia and RevGalBlogPals on the weekend of The Annunciation of the Lord.

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