Luke 12.13-21 Prayer of the Rich Fool — Ana & Tod Gobledale, Australia

a responsive prayer of confession arising from Luke 12.13-21

8th Sunday after Pentecost, Year C

God of Life, Creator of the earth and all that is in it,
We lift our prayers of thanks to you
For the beauty of the earth that surrounds us,
For spring flowers that dazzle us and summer’s greenery that delights us,
For autumn’s bounty that sustains us, and winter’s hibernation which settles us.
Thanks be to You, Lover of the heavens and the earth, from whom all life springs forth.
 
God of Enough,
We enjoy your abundance, yet are seduced by accumulation.
The mantra, ‘More is better,’ lulls us.
New inventions become seeming ‘necessities.’
We fill our cupboards and closets, basements and barns to overflowing.
Yet we despair, feeling our lives stand empty.
God, let us not be possessed by our possessions.
 
God of Serenity,
We claim to enjoy your peace, yet we persist in worry about things.
Even as scripture reminds us that Solomon’s finery cannot compare to the flowers of the fields,  We worry about our house, our car–our cars, our clothes, our shoes.
Yet we despair, sensing our coveted treasures bring no lasting meaning to life.
God, let us not be possessed by our possessions.

God of Trust,
we sing of your ‘blessed assurance,’
Yet crave promises from our banks and pensions.
We worry if our Individual Retirement Accounts will see us through.
We store up more and more riches for our earthly security.
Yet we despair, discovering we are not ‘rich towards’ You.
God, let us not be possessed by our possessions.

God of Community,
We commit ourselves to care for others,
Yet we stock our pantries for tomorrow, while millions suffer empty bellies today.
We focus on our shoe collection while millions go bare-footed.
We lament our fashion follies while others lament that their children go naked and cold.
We deposit ever more into our bank accounts while millions live from day-to-day.
God, let us not be possessed by our possessions.

God of Contentment,
Our life span is short, at any moment to be taken from us.
Free us from greed, and fill us with generosity.
Release us from insecurity and restore us to contentment with the treasures of your realm.
Strip us of our fear and strengthen us to love one another as you have loved us.
Thanks be to You, Lover of the heavens and the earth, from whom all life springs forth.

Written while Ana & Tod were Chaplains at Churches of Christ Theological College (now Sterling College) in Mulgrave, Victoria, Australia