3 January: Resolutions

  • Do we do New Year Resolutions? Do we still do New Year Resolutions – or have we given up because we know we don’t keep them?
  • Following Jesus is a bit like making resolutions – only we know we can’t attain his standards, live fully by his values, or entirely follow his example. But if we come to him and say ‘sorry’, he forgives us, gives us a new start, and helps us to try better

Lord Jesus, forgive us for all the mistakes we make. Thank you that you give us a new start. Help us to follow more faithfully in your way

Help all who are striving to follow New Year resolutions that will make them happier or healthier, help others, or bring peace and justice to the world

Week beginning 27 December: New Year

As we say ‘Goodbye’ to 2015
what will we remember?
The Summer weather (or lack thereof)?
The General Election?
The terrorist attacks abroad?
Demolition of the new Burgh Hall?
The refugees?
Something more personal?
Something good, or something bad?

As we look forward to 2016
what are we thinking?
Are we looking forward with expectation?
Or with fear, loneliness, worry?

Lord,

For all that has been:
we give thanks for your presence with us
your love and your forgiveness

For all that is to come:
we ask for the strength to keep trusting in you
for the growth of your Kingdom in Dumbarton
for growth in our two congregations
and for peace and justice in your world

Week beginning 20 December: Christmas

Will you travel by the light of the babe new born?

In the candle lit at night there’s a gleam of dawn,

and the darkness all about is too dim to put it out:

will you hide, or decide to meet the light?

Loving God

As we thank you for what you did for us long ago

and for all that we have now

we pray for those for whom Christmas is not a happy time

those living with the worry or pain of illness or grief

those who are lonely

those separated from loved ones

those who lack shelter or food

those worried about money or job

those who live in fear of their lives

Week beginning 13 December: Advent

            The Sovereign LORD has filled me with his spirit.

            He has chosen me and sent me

            to bring good news to the poor,

            to heal the broken-hearted,

            to announce release to captives

            and freedom to those in prison.

            He has sent me to proclaim

            that the time has come

            when the LORD will save his people.

Isaiah 61: 1-2

Will you join the hope alight in a young girl’s eyes

Of the mighty put to flight by a baby’s cries?

When the lowest and the least are the foremost at the feast,

Will you hide or decide to meet the light?

Father,

We may never see a perfect world

maybe no one will ever see it until we pass the veil of death

but you want us to keep working for it

sharing the love of Jesus

sharing the Good News of Jesus

and you have given us your Spirit too

 

Week beginning 6 December: Advent

A voice cries out:

            “Prepare in the wilderness a road for the Lord!”

            A voice cries out:

            “Proclaim a message!”
Isaiah 40: 3, 6

Will you come and see the light from the stable door?

            It is shining newly bright, though it shone before.

            It will be your guiding star, it will show you who you are.

            Will you hide or decide to meet the light?

Lord,

Make us ready to speak about why following Jesus

matters to us

Make us ready to speak out against injustice

and all that is wrong

Help us not only to speak about a better way of living

but to put it into practice

Prayer Diary: Week beginning 29 November: Scotland

  • Give thanks for being part of a community, for friends, family, neighbours and colleagues
  • Pray that people may feel committed to working for the best for their communities, offering time and energy to help others
  • Pray for those who are facing problems of loneliness, illness, poverty, unemployment/underemployment, abuse
  • Pray for all who are involved in local and national government
  • Give thanks for the beauty around us. Pray that we may appreciate and care for it
  • Pray for the churches in Scotland, that they may be faithful witnesses to Christ’s love and Good News, and that more and more people will respond to Christ’s call

Prayer Diary: Week beginning 22 November: Guild

  • Thank you for the fellowship which the members of the Guild share each week
    The Church of Scotland Guild is an organisation that extends across the whole country, encouraging members to recognise that they are part of something larger than their own congregation. Give thanks for friendships made, and support offered and received
  • The Church of Scotland Guild is open to men as well as women, and although in Dumbarton the Guild meets in Riverside, there are members from a number of churches including West Kirk. Pray that more will be encouraged to join, and feel welcomed and included
  • Guild activities do not just happen. Someone has to plan, organise, arrange them, as well as give up time to write letters, look after money, go to meetings and so on. Give thanks for those who are willing to do that, and pray that they will keep having the stamina and enthusiasm
  • The Guild across the country supports a number of projects. This year the Evening Guild is supporting Street Pastors and Breaking the cycle of Female Genital Mutilation. The afternoon Guild is supporting care for Mother Earth in Bolivia and Care for the Family. Give thanks for the work of the Guild in raising awareness as well as money, and pray for the success of the projects

    Fact File
    Afternoon Guild        Thursday afternoons at 2pm
    Evening Guild           Wednesday evenings at 7.30pm
    The After Eights        Wednesday evenings at 8pm
    Meet in Riverside

Prayer Diary: Week beginning 15 November: Beavers, Cubs and Scouts

  • We give thanks for the young people in Beavers, Cubs and Scouts. We pray that they will continue to enjoy belonging to the group, and the wider movement
  • Give thanks for the commitment of the leaders, which involves much more than just turning up on a Tuesday or Thursday evening!
  • Pray that more people will come forward to train as leaders, and that current members of the group will be inspired to become leaders themselves in due course
  • Give thanks for the support of families

Fact File:

Beavers                    Tuesdays 6.00pm – 7.00pm
Cubs                         Tuesdays 6.00pm – 7.00pm
Scouts                       Thursdays 7.45pm – 9.45pm
Meet in Riverside

 

Prayer Diary: Week beginning 8 November: Remembrance

  • Let us remember the courage, the devotion to duty, the self-sacrifice of the men and women in our armed forces, the toil, the endurance, the suffering of those who were not in uniform, the support of those from afar
  • Let us remember those who were wounded in the fight, who perished in air raids at home, who fell in battle, who are buried at sea or in some corner of a foreign field
  • Let us remember those who were our enemies, who also lost parents, children, brothers, sisters, friends, who also lost homes, hopes, dreams
  • Let us remember those who came back, whose lives still bear the scars of war, who lost sight or limbs or reason, who lost faith in God and hope for humanity
  • Let us remember those currently caught up in wars – the military personnel and the civilians
  • Let us remember God’s will for his world, his continuing care for us and his call to us to follow in the way of Christ

They shall not grow old
as we who are left grow old
Age shall not weary them
nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun
and in the morning
We will remember them.

Prayer Diary: Week beginning 1 November: Health services in the parishes

  • So often we take the Health Service and all who work in it for granted. It is only when we hear about the way Health Services operate in some other countries, or the lack of available/affordable healthcare, that we realise how fortunate we are. So we give thanks for it
  • We pray for all who are engaged in the Health Service locally, whether as doctors, nurses, health visitors, midwives, physiotherapists or whatever
  • We pray for the Health Board who plan the delivery of Health Services, and the decisions they take
  • We pray for all the staff and patients in the hospitals which serve Dumbarton: Vale of Leven, Royal Alexandra, Golden Jubilee and the Glasgow hospitals
  • We pray for those who need the help of healthcare professionals, particularly if they have long-term needs