With three funerals at the church this week I’ve had the grieving on my mind. This prayer is for those who walk in the valley of the shadow of death.
Heavenly Father, you are God over every season, place and time and though we dwell in light of joy or in the darkness of grief, it is your hand that guides us.
There are many this week O Lord, who are numbered among the newly grieved and we pray for them now.
How can we offer words to those who endure the pain of loss? There are no words to restore the life of a loved one, nor any to assuage the grief that remains on our hearts. Words simply fail.
But your word is different. You have the words, indeed you are the Word of eternal life and words gently spoken from your lips are a balm to the soul.
And so, we ask you to speak peace to our loved ones, in the quietness of their hearts restore their confidence in you as a loving and faithful God.
Especially for those who have watched their loved ones suffer before dying, we ask for the ministry of your tender Spirit.
We shake our fist and shout, “Why? Why did they have to die! Like Mary and Martha, we look at you with accusing, tear-filled eyes and say, “If you had been here she would not have died.”
Help us to see that you were there and that you suffered as well and that you grieve with us and for us even now. Help us to see and to trust that you are here even now, and will be ever more.
We believe Lord; now help us in our unbelief. Reach out to us in our weakness lest we sink beneath the waves. Place our feet upon a rock and make our Spirit strong. Shelter us from the cruel winds of doubt and bitterness; restore our confidence as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
Hear our cries in the night, hear our prayers as Jesus taught us, “Our Father…”