Prayers for those Navigating a new normal

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)

Coronavirus has turned our world upside down, leaving many of us trying to work out a completely new way of life for ourselves and our families. It’s unsettling, stressful and lonely. And we simply don’t know how long this season of challenge and change is going to last.

When the brokenness of our world forces itself upon us so strongly, the comfort of God’s Word can step forward even more strongly. While much of the Bible directs our focus to the future we are promised in Jesus’ presence, free from sickness, death, crying and pain (Revelation 21:4), God also uses His Word to remind us of His presence for the here and now.

We do not journey through uncertainty alone. Our “ever-present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1) is with us and in us, even now, even as we walk this long road.

It is striking just how much the Psalms repeat the image of God saving us and holding us in His “right hand” (Psalm 17:7; 18:35; 60:5; 63:8; 73:23; 108:6; 139:10). There is an intimacy in this image, like a parent clasping the hand of their child to keep them safe, secure and sustained even as they navigate dangerous situations together. As long as we are held by the hand of God, we cannot get lost. Our Father is right here with us.

Now, more than ever, it is really important to be praying for one another, spending quality time in the presence of our heavenly Father and encouraging one another that we are held in His mighty hands.

We face a new normal on earth, but nothing has changed in God’s kingdom; so we can face each day with confidence as we hold our Father’s strong hand.

~ prayers ~

Heavenly Father, the Mighty Warrior who holds me in Your right hand, remind me that I do not need to be afraid; I am made courageous by Your Spirit within me. I do not need to defend my ‘castle’, ward off the world around me and fear for my life. My every breath, my every moment, belongs to You. I cannot be snatched from Your hands, so I pray, whatever it costs, help me stand in the world as a person of generosity and hope, faith and love. May my family, community and nation look at me and see someone who still stands strong because my God still reigns on the throne forever and ever, Amen.

Lord Jesus Christ, You taught us to love our neighbour, whoever they may be. You taught us to care for the needy, whatever their needs. You taught us to come alongside the hurting, and bear their burdens with them. In this time of anxiety, uncertainty and change, give me strength to comfort the fearful, compassion to tend the sick and presence of mind to reassure the isolated of my love and Your love. For Your name’s sake, Amen.

Gracious Heavenly Father, we lift to you all those who have had very important and special plans cancelled or postponed: weddings, education, special holidays and get-togethers and all of the other things affected by the lockdown measures. We pray that you would use these circumstances to draw them near to You. We pray that You would build their faith in Your goodness, Your faithfulness and Your love; and use these painful circumstances for their ultimate good. Bring blessing out of adversity as things settle into a new normal. Amen.

Loving Heavenly Father, You are so much more loving and compassionate than we can even comprehend. Your mercy knows no bounds. As human beings, we are so prone to judge, to criticise and to see others from our own limited viewpoint. I pray for my own heart; that You would give me Your compassion for the people around me navigating this new world. I pray for loving, gracious attitudes towards others; especially those with whom we have strong differences of opinion. Do not let our love for our neighbour go cold. Wash away our biases and our selfishness and enlarge our hearts. Help us to see others through Your eyes. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Sovereign Lord, as things creep back towards some kind of normality, we join in praying for our nation and our world. Please give special protection to our schools, shops and workplaces as they continue to reopen. Keep safe those who are especially vulnerable and those who are living with high-risk family and friends. We pray that there would not be an increase in new cases and deaths, but that the number would continue to reduce. We thank You that Your grace has upheld us through this situation; and we thank You that we have Your strength for every day moving forward, Amen.


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