By Hayley Beckett on 20th May 2020
EBA Week of Prayer
Alongside churches across the world we invite you to join in praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’. Each day we offer a Family Activity, Scriptures, Prayers and options to Download resources from our website and other sources.
May God by His Spirit be with us, lead us and guide us as we pray together.
Focus: to pray in our homes, praying for children, families and those on their own.
Use the Prayer Place Mats that you can download and print off from the EBA website to help guide your prayers together in your household. If you prefer, of course you can make your own. Using the Prayer Place Mats when you share a meal together, spend time thinking about what each of you can write in each of the spaces and as you eat together today pray through each aspect of prayer.
Draw an outline of a house and ask each member of your family to put a fingerprint inside the house, give the fingerprints eyes and a smile and thank God for each member of your family and something that makes you smile about them. Display your picture along with the verse from Joshua 24:15 As for me and my house we will serve the Lord
“So, here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”
Our worship and our Christian living should be worked out in our everyday lives, Christianity is not just for within the four walls of a church building, or that 10 to 15 minute devotional time first thing in the morning. For parents these verses are a great model of how to live in worship with God. As you live, as you do family life, as you eat, your everyday, chaotic, busy, food making, clearing up, watching TV life and present it as a family before God as your offering – as your worship to Him.
It is never that easy for parents, but our children will learn faith that sticks their whole life from their tie at home with their family Parents have a key role in bringing God’s message to children so that they can decide to live their lives for Him. Parents are the people who spend most time with children and who have the biggest influence of their children.
God will meet with our children and young people
our children and young people will fall in love with Jesus and desire to grow in relationship with Him
God will inspire and encourage parents as they disciple their children
Taken from Parenting for Faith (www.parenting forfaith.org)
You created parents and children to enjoy a personal relationship with you.
Help parents, godparents, grandparents and guardians
to show the children in their care the reality of life lived with you,
the excitement of God-connectedness,
and the adventure of a lifelong journey of faith in your service.
In the name of Jesus.
Children, Family and Youth Focus Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rabMZmjzU7Y
Thy Kingdom Come – family prayer adventure map here https://www.thykingdomcome.global/resources/digital-family-prayer-adventure-map)
Focus on our immediate community – taking a virtual or real prayer walk, what do we see, how can we pray for God’s Kingdom to come?
If you are able go out for a walk using the normal route to school/church or an activity that your children are familiar with, Talk about the people you meet there friends and families you know and pray for them, pray that God will be with them whatever they are doing today. If you are unable to go outside to walk draw around your feet and write or draw people that you would meet when you do go to the places mentioned above.
Psalm 8; Matthew 6:25-34
I invite you take a prayer walk, either literally or in your imagination if you are unable to go outside.
As you set out on your walk, what do you see what do you expect to see?
Open my eyes Lord to what you see in my community, give me a fresh way of seeing with your eyes and with your awareness of the needs of the area in which I live.
Your Kingdom come, Your Will be done
Notice the weather around you, Is the sun shining or is it raining, is the day calm or is it windy?
As you turn each corner what do you see?
Closed shops, quiet streets, isolated people, sad people, rushing people, suspicious people, relaxed people or no people?
Lord we pray for our local businesses, for the shops and leisure centres who serve us. We pray for your blessing on them.
We pray for people who are shut in and cut off. For the elderly and vulnerable, for the anxious and fearful. Lord bring them comfort
Your Kingdom come, Your Will be done
Slow down as you walk. This about who else has also walked this path? What burdens may they have carried in their lives, that may be different, bigger or smaller than yours, but equally important?
What burdens are you carrying that God wants to carry for you?
Thank you, God for taking our burdens and now we pray for every house on our street, for every precious life these houses represent, that they too would know God carrying their burdens
Your Kingdom come, Your will be done
As you walk, see God’s beauty around you, green grass, leave on trees, flowers in people’s gardens, new spring life all around. Breath in His presence represented by such beauty.
Thank you, Creator God for your amazing and bountiful creation.
Thank you that even during times of turmoil you hold this world in your hands, we pray that:
Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, here on earth as in heaven.
Focus: to pray for our frontline workers
Many households have drawn, coloured, painted a rainbow and put it up in windows for everyone to see. Using the letters of the word “rainbow” can you think of frontline workers that begin with each letter, write them down in rainbow colours and Thank God for each one and the job they do. If you know a frontline worker why not write/draw a letter of thanks and post it to them.
1 Corinthians 12:5; 1 Corinthians 15:58; Matthew 11:28
Our work and our productivity is valuable to God: he himself is a productive, creative God. He has given each one of us many gifts and he calls us to make good use of those gifts and abilities. that we might do everything for His glory, however ordinary or mundane that may feel. In our work he comes alongside us and shares our burdens and carries us through even the hardest of times.
Who do you know who works on the frontline? Take time to name them in prayer, picture them in their work place.
What is the name of your nearest school or hospital? Name it before God and pray for those who work there.
Picture the care home in your village, town district and highlight it to God.
Have you had your bins emptied this week, post delivered this week, shopping delivered this week? Picture those delivery people and bring them to God.
Thank you for the delivery drivers, shelf-stackers, nurses, teachers, funeral
directors, electricians, cleaners, doctors, nursery workers, plumbers, fire
fighters, social workers, anaesthetists, police officers, carers, IT technicians,
factory workers, coast guards, refuse collectors, train drivers, dentists,
farmers, charity workers, midwives, postal workers, Border Force officers,
check-out staff, surgeons, pharmacists, learning support assistants, gas
engineers, drainage workers, prison officers, ministers, taxi drivers,
journalists, probation officers, bus drivers, benefits assistants and all the
other key workers
Thank you for the tireless work they do
To keep people safe, healthy and fed
Thank you for their gifts of patience, care, and expertise
Thank you for these key workers who model a turning of the tables
A different perspective on what it means to be integral to our communities
And to the smooth running of society
When this is all over
Let me not forget their significance
Or take them for granted again
Chaplaincy video by one of the EBA’s hospital Chaplains https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt8r89EGW38&feature=youtu.be
Focus: to pray for the vulnerable, both those at home and those who have no home; those struggling with COVID 19 and those who have lost loved ones; those affected by the pandemic across the world.
Grab an old plain T-shirt and put it on a bear or cuddly toy. Take a few moments to think of people that would be finding this time difficult and write them on the T-shirt, pass the bear around your family members and as you cuddle the bear ask God to be with them.
Look at a map of the world, how many countries can you name? Do you know where they are? Can you find any that are mentioned in the BMS video (link below)? Pray for these people who may not have the same medical care that we do in this country. Pray for the people who choose to go and work within these countries
Deuteronomy 15:1-11; Matthew 26:6-13
The Bible tells us that there will always be poor people among us. That is not intended to be fatalistic, but realistic and a challenge to us to do something about it. The poor are, by definition, usually the most vulnerable and weakest. Ironically during the Covid-19 outbreak many homeless their situation has improved as many of them are in temporary accommodation! But once the lockdown is eased will they be pushed back onto our streets, or will we be able to respond with the generosity that God seeks from us?
Heavenly Father you do not live in houses, temples or churches but you dwell in the hearts of those who love you, by your Spirit. Jesus was homeless – relying on the generosity of others throughout his life from a borrowed stable to a borrowed grave. Generous God prompt us by your Spirit to be generous those in need – whether in our street, our town or across the world. Help us to recognise that as we bless others, so we bless you.
Heavenly Father, we seek your healing power and gracious touch on those who are suffering from Covid-19. Give them strength to fight the infection. Breathe your breath into them if they are struggling for their own breath. Give them your reassuring presence when they are isolated from those they love. May they experience your peace that makes no sense in the circumstances. And may they recognise you in the faces and hands, actions and words of those who are risking their own health to care for them.
Heavenly Father, who experienced the searing loss of bereavement when Jesus died on the cross, we pray for those who are bereft because of Covid-19. In these times when we are unable even to offer the reassurance of a hug, we fervently pray that they may experience the consolation of your Spirit, the Comforter, within them and around them. May our words and actions convey the depth of our shared sorrow and offer some solace. We pray too for those who serve us in our time of bereavement – for morticians, funeral directors, coroners and ministers – please use them so that those who mourn are blessed by being comforted.
Heavenly Father, when it is easy for us to be focused on the effect of Covid-19 on our own lives, neighbourhoods, towns and country, give us a greater awareness of the way that others around your world are being affected. Thank you for those, like BMS World Mission and their Global Partners, who are seeking to bring relief, comfort, health and hope to people who are perhaps even more at risk from this virus than we are because they lack some of the resources that we have previously taken for granted. We pray too for wisdom and a united approach for world leaders in tackling this outbreak – putting the needs of the most vulnerable around the world before national self-interest.
Prayers from members of 57 West, a church of the homeless in Southend. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=14SVOdjR4PE&feature=youtu.be
BMS Video https://www.bmsworldmission.org/product/solidarity-sunday-video/and how to be involved in Solidarity Sunday https://www.bmsworldmission.org/get-involved/learn/solidarity-sunday/
Focus: to pray for God’s Spirit to break out, in our churches, in our communities, in our nation and across the world.
Read The Lord’s Prayer together, perhaps using the modernised version of the words, below.
Starting with the words “God Is” how many words can you think to describe Jesus? Write them down, decorate them and sick them up on a wall or on your fridge to remind you all of Who Jesus is.
Acts 1:1-5; Acts 2; Joel 2:28-29; John 20:19-23
The Holy Spirit being given to all at Pentecost is a gift for all believers for all a time. How he worked on that very special day, is not necessarily something we will see again, but we can be completely sure that God continues to pour out His Spirit on His people. This same Spirit points us to salvation through Jesus and to know the love of the Father and this same Spirit equips us to share our salvation as missional disciples. This same Spirit show us how to join in the adventure of risky faith-filled living, will you dare to dream, dare to pray for God to do something new among us through a fresh outpouring of His Spirit in 2020?
Chaos and Change by Clare McBeath
When we survey the scene
of chaos before us
we’re hesitant to invoke the presence of God
not too sure what
we might be letting ourselves in for.
Nevertheless we say
Come unsettling God
Come with your chaos
Come with your anger
Come with our passion
Come but be gentle with us.
God who meets us
in the chaos of everyday life
turning the tables on injustice
demanding that we see things
from a different perspective,
We praise you and thank you
that you do not allow us
to stay as we are
but you jolt us out of complacency
you challenge us to change
dare us to dream differently
and every so often
you turn our world upside down.
It’s exiting, it’s scary, it’s painful, it’s risky
but this is the journey of faith
you have called us on.
Give us courage to follow you
upside down God
and give us the assurance
that you have travelled
the path before us
will journey with us
and will follow after us
Christ our strength
Christ our companion
Christ our guide
In Jesus’ name.
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and for ever.
EBA Council has created a version of the Lord’s Prayer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zh3sz1-hnTs&feature=youtu.be
You may also like to use these songs to help you in your praying:
Holy Spirit you are welcome here
Spirit Break Out
16th May 2020
SAFEGUARDING OFFICER Eastern Baptist Association The Eastern Baptist Association is seeking a suitably experienced part-time Safeguarding Officer who will take a lead for the Association on issues relating to safeguarding and the protection of children, young people and adults at risk. This person will work closely with the…
1st April 2020
Recent events have got me thinking about ‘optics’. No, I haven’t been thinking about glasses (although I am reminded of the reason for cleaning your glasses: you can’t be optimistic with a misty optic). I have been thinking about political optics. That’s the way that events are perceived by the…
20th March 2020
Online Resources The EBA YouTube channel has sermons provided by our Regional Ministers, plus they are all happy to be asked to prerecord a sermon for you to use within a online service please be in contact. As well as what we have produced EBA member churches are providing online…