The Reverend Christine V. Hides

God of the trailhead, God of the wilderness, God who makes a camp among us, God of the threshold who greets us with open arms as we make our way home, we delight in the joys of this week: your presence in the moonlit sky and the shimmering meteors. You whisper through the tree branches, accompanying the melody of hope sung by morning birds, These summer days are alive with opportunities to gather with friends and enjoy your creation.

God of the journey, our guide and companion, you lead us through the unmarked and unmaintained trails, up the steep hills where we can barely catch our breath, you walk with us as we chart a new course when the way before us is blocked. Dwell with us along the river’s edge, in this splendid sanctuary, and at the bedside of the sick. Be our strength as we face our fears, our illnesses, our losses, and our addictions. Like our ancestors, let us build cairns to mark the sacred path. We search for you, holy God, longing for the deep peace and joy which passes understanding. And as we wander these worried and wonderful ways, you make for us a festival of people to rejoice with us, to weep with us, to walk with us in our suffering.

We trust our cares and concerns to you: praying especially those who are settling into new homes, for those readying for a new school year, for those struggling with long illnesses, for those who grieve loved ones. We pray for those in need of employment or companionship. Make a way, O Lord, through the long search.

Just as you have guided our confirmands safely through the wilderness, revealing your glory in the mountains and waterfalls, we ask you to be present with us in our daily lives. Help us to turn from our distractions and stay attentive to your presence in our midst. Show us how to live as Jesus Christ, the one who walked among us, traversing a path of peace and love rather than power and privilege.

Pour out your Holy Spirit, O God, on your people gathered here, and on these gifts of bread and wine. By your Spirit make us one body in Christ, one in mission and ministry to the world. Nourish us in faith, hope, and love, and strengthen us for service, until we feast with you in glory. All praise and honor and glory are yours, holy triune God, now and forever,  as we join our voices in the ancient prayer: Our Father…. Amen.