Podcast Worship

Prayer for Wednesday 6 October 2021

Listen to a service of Prayer for 6 October 2021 (Trinity 18 / DEL Week 27: Wednesday), including a reflection on the gospel reading


O Lord, open our lips
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.


God, our judge and saviour,
teach us to be open to your truth
and to trust in your love,
that we may live each day
with confidence in the salvation
which is given through
Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 86.1-9

Incline your ear, O Lord, and answer me,
for I am poor and in misery.

Preserve my soul, for I am faithful;
save your servant, for I put my trust in you.

Be merciful to me, O Lord, for you are my God;
I call upon you all the day long.

Gladden the soul of your servant,
for to you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.

For you, Lord, are good and forgiving,
abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.

Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer
and listen to the voice of my supplication.

In the day of my distress I will call upon you,
for you will answer me.

Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord,
nor any works like yours.

All nations you have made shall come and worship you, O Lord,
and shall glorify your name.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

Luke 11.1-4

Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.’

He said to them, ‘When you pray, say:
Father, hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,
         for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us.
And do not bring us to the time of trial.’


When those who are to be ordained are in training they are often advised to never lead the Lord’s Prayer in public without the words open in front of them. That may seem a strange injunction but it is, in fact, very wise advice. We all know the Lord’s Prayer. For many people, the Lord’s Prayer is one of those core texts that we just know. We may not remember where we learned it, but it is there in our minds, in our spiritual DNA. That is the reason for the advice that is given to those training for ordained ministry. We know it too well. Like experienced actors, the words flow from us like well-rehearsed lines. The Lord’s Prayer is the one prayer most people can recite without any warning or preparation, and therein lies the problem. When our rhythm is broken, when we are distracted, when some pressing thought springs into our minds, we forget where we are in the prayer and we stumble. Suddenly, we are grasping for those very familiar words. On one level wide-spread knowledge of the Lord’s Prayer is a good thing, but perhaps not if it leads us to a cavalier approach to its use.

Prayer is never easy. Our minds flit to and fro between the spiritual and the mundane, between the vital and the trivial, between the life-enhancing and the self-indulgent. Focusing our minds on God, even for a few seconds, is difficult. Whatever strategies we may have developed for entering into that one-to-one conversation with Our Father who art in heaven, we are so easily distracted. We stumble and we give up.

Jesus gave us the Lord’s Prayer in response to a request from one of his disciples. That unnamed disciple asked: Lord, teach us to pray. Jesus’ response was to give us the most beautiful and complete set of prayers, all contained within so few words. The Lord’s Prayer leads us from praise to hope; from personal intercession to acknowledging our faults before God; from seeking personal forgiveness to reminding ourselves of the need to forgive others; from a prayer for deliverance back to where we started in our praise of God. As well as giving us the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus tells us that God knows what we need before we ask, and that is what makes the brevity and power of the Lord’s Prayer so wonderful. We do not need to waste our time with rambling lists of our needs and wants. We just need to speak to God and have faith.

Let us pray that, as we use the Lord’s Prayer, we might for the tiny amount of time it takes to say those words, slow down and focus on God alone. Let us pray that we might then listen. In that silence there will be the still small voice which is God’s answer to our prayers.

Prayers of intercession

Let us pray with confidence to our Father in heaven.

Hear the prayer of the Church for her work and worship, as we look to the coming of the Kingdom. Keep all Christian people faithful in prayer, trusting that as we ask so we shall receive.

We pray that the will of God shall be done through all the world, until its people are made one in him. We pray for a new spirit among nations, that disputes shall be ended, differences reconciled and debts forgiven.

Come in blessing to us, to our families, friends and neighbours, and give us what we need day by day. Give grace to all in our community, to share generously the good things we are given with those who have little.

Pardon and heal all who are caught in bitterness and resentment about wrongs that they cannot forgive. Deliver from evil those who are sorely tried as they make decisions for their lives.

Receive in mercy the souls of the departed and forgive the sins of their lives on earth. Grant them peace and joy for ever in the Kingdom of Heaven.

May our prayers be accepted in the name of Christ, who has taught us how to pray.

Prayer for the week

Lord and heavenly Father,
make us mindful of your presence with us;
that we may draw near to you
with holy and humble hearts,
and offer prayers and praises
acceptable in your sight;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever. 

The Grace

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,
be with us all evermore. Amen.