July 30th, 2023

Holy One, your welcome is wide

and the table is wide

and your arms open wide to gather us in.

You invite us to “come” just as we are

with all that we hold – our joys and gratitude,

with the heavy baggage that weighs us down

and the unhealed places of our hearts.

Your welcome extends to us whether

youthful or weary

tired or troubled

gracious or grumpy

secure in our faith

or seeking and searching.

You invite us to your table with joy.

And we come

as your people who trust in your grace.

We come unhindered and free.

And our deepest hunger will be

satisfied with the Bread of Life, which is you.

And our deepest thirst will be quenched

as we drink deeply from your cup of blessing.

At your table of grace

transform us to be bread

for a hungering world,

and drink for those who thirst.

May our table be wide

and the welcome be wide.

May our hospitality be generous and joyful.

God of grace, you welcome us and prayers

for our needs, those we love, and the world.

Be comfort for the grieving – our hearts are weeping.

Be strength for the hurting, those faced with big decisions and transition,

and those who struggle or find life hard.

We pray for all who stand in need of healing, hope, and wholeness.

Held in your wide embrace, hear our prayers for those

who gather at conflicted family tables;

world leaders gathered at the tables of power.

Pour out your grace at the tables of the poor, the marginalized,

the sick, those who are far from home,

and those who yearn for safety and security.

May all creation know your justice,

your peace that surpasses all understanding,

your love that sustains and heals.

May we each know your welcome and grace

and extend your welcome wide.

We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen