Feb. 18, 2021
A daily prayer during this COVID-19 crisis
During these difficult days, members of the New England Conference Board of Ordained Ministry are sharing a daily prayer based on the Revised Common Lectionary for the week. You are welcome to use these in worship or in your own devotions.
“And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him” (Mark 1:12-13 NRSV). God, we meet your Son not in the palace, but in the wilderness. He was vulnerable like us - as he stayed in the wilderness for forty days. He was there in embracing all the challenges or struggles of human life such as hunger, thirsty, fear, insecurity, and anxiety. For your Son, each one of these challenges was another name of the beasts in the wilderness, which he was asked to encounter. He was driven to cope with those forces that stormed his mind and heart.
God, we too, encounter our own beasts in the wilderness of our lives. Fear drives us to get panicked, hunger weakens us to feel helpless, thirst drags us to be impatient, insecurity dwindles our trust and belief, and anxiety shakes us to lose the balance on the steps of our life. Help us, O Lord, to see the angels of light, of courage, and of empowerment. Guide us to weather all the storms in the course of passing the turbulence of pandemic, uncertainty, and helplessness.
God of abiding and caring love, you sent the angels into the wilderness when your Son went against many spiritual battles. You reminded him that he was not alone in the desert journey. As your Son encountered your abiding love and care, help us to find your angels who show up when we are tired, hungry, thirsty, and surrounded by the wild beasts of despair and distress. With your help, we can move beyond our time of struggles and frustrations. Help and guide us to take on the courage of preaching the gospel of the “vulnerable Jesus” who emptied himself for the abundance of God’s infinite love. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.
By Rev. Jinyong Choi, North Boston Korean UMC, Andover, MA Based on Mark 1:9-15