As wheat ripens in the sun
and the tiny mustard seed develops into the largest of trees
we want to grow in your love.
May we be encouraging and supportive to all we encounter
and not stifling like the weeds of our parable.
We bring the people of your world before you
praying for those who have been left behind
and seen as somehow less important.
As we emerge from lockdown
we think of people who face special challenges.
We pray for those facing uncertain futures,
perhaps because of lost livelihoods,
anxious for all that lies ahead.
We pray for communities facing renewed lockdown
and those continuing to shield and live in isolation.
We bring to you all who grieve.
We think of those whose lives continue to inspire us to seek justice
to build a world which truly mirrors your unconditional love.
We pray for all those present in our virtual community this morning.
May we be a source of encouragement and support to one another.
As we consider how, in your love, we flourish and grow
we ask that the gifts of your creation
The wheat and all that sustains us
will be spread more fairly,
and that those who have nothing
might receive all that they need.
May we learn the lessons of this current crisis
and bring about a new normal
that is truly your dream for the world:
to offer beauty for brokenness
in the way we care for all in our society.
As we offer our witness
through the actions of sharing your unconditional love for the world,
we pray that your people will experience that love and hear your word
and that, understanding it,
they may grow ever closer to you
with faith that grows like the tiny mustard seed.
Philip currently serves as Ecumenical Officer for the United Reformed Church in Great Britain.