Worshiping the Triune God: The Prayer for Illumination

The last time we talked about worshiping the Triune God we focused on the Prayers of the People.  As I said then, for some churches this prayer occurs after the Sermon.  However, we generally take time for these prayers of intercession before the Message.  Then we’ll often sing a Song of Preparation before hearing God’s Word proclaimed.  Part of this preparation for hearing God’s word usually involves a Prayer for Illumination, which is a prayer asking God to speak to us through his word and for help in listening to the word that is given.  As we read in The Worship Sourcebook (Faith Alive, 2013): “The prayer for illumination explicitly acknowledges the Spirit’s work in this part of worship by requesting God’s Spirit to act through the reading and preaching of Scripture.  This prayer may also acknowledge that we all come to Scripture with varying degrees of faith, trust, and knowledge.” (p. 139)  We pray this prayer before the Sermon because we believe that God speaks though his word, which the pastor’s message is based on.  This is God’s word for us today, and we don’t want to miss it.  So, we pray a prayer something like this one based on Psalm 25: “Lord God, help us to know your ways; teach us your paths.  Lead us in your truth, and teach us, for you are the God of our salvation; for you we wait all day long.  Through Christ our Lord. Amen!”  How blessed we are to have a God who speaks to us through his word.  May God help us to become excellent listeners and doers of the word.  Amen?

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