Litany of Hope

A Litany of Hope to balance the Litany of Pain 
posted earlier. (See note below.) 

May the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ 
be blessed!

He is the compassionate Father and God 
of all comfort.

God of all sufficient grace,
   please, hear me.
Immanuel, God ever and always with us,
   please, be with me.
God of all hope and comfort,
   please, give me peace.

Lord, please forgive and take away:
   my sense of entitlement,
   my expectations and bitterness,
   my ingratitude for your blessings.

Lord, help me release to you, in faith:
   the plans I had for life,
   my hopes and dreams,
   all that I have lost.

Lord, help me believe and accept:
   you are present when I’m in pain,
   your grace is always enough, sufficient
   your power works best through weakness.

Lord, help me to fix:
   my eyes on things unseen, not seen,
   my hope on your work, not my own,
   my heart on your blessings.

And so by your grace may I find:
   peace in the midst of pain,
   strength in the midst of weakness,
   joy in the midst of hardship.

--Amen


We have this treasure in clay pots
     so that the awesome power belongs to God 
and doesn’t come from us.

We are experiencing all kinds of trouble,
     but aren’t crushed.
We are confused,
     but we aren’t depressed.
We are harassed,
     but we aren’t abandoned.
We are knocked down,
     but we aren’t knocked out.
We always carry Jesus’ death around in our bodies
     so that Jesus’ life can also be seen
     in our bodies.
We know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus 
     will also raise us with Jesus,
     and he will bring us into his presence. 
But even if our bodies are breaking down 
   on the outside, 
     the person we are on the inside is being 
     renewed every day.
Our temporary minor problems are producing
     an eternal stockpile of glory for us that 
     is beyond all comparison. 
We don’t focus on the things that can be seen,
     but on the things that can’t be seen.
The things that can be seen don’t last,
     but the things that can’t be seen are eternal.

We know that if the tent that we live in on earth
   is torn down,
     we have a building from God.
It’s a house that isn’t handmade, which is eternal
   and located in heaven. 
We groan while we live in this residence
   because we are weighed down. 
We want to be dressed not undressed,
   so that what is dying may be swallowed up
   by life. 
Now the one who prepared us for this very thing
   is God,
     and God gave us the Spirit as a down payment
     for our home. 

So we are always confident.
We live by faith and not by sight.

- Selections from 2 Corinthians 4-5
(Common English Bible)

Thanks to Curt Niccum, Craig Churchill, and Doug Foster for reading and offering their suggestions to this prayer. If you have suggestions, I urge you to post them as comments.
 

Glenn Pemberton is a minister turned professor turned writer. After serving churches in Texas and Colorado, Glenn completed a Ph.D. (Old Testament). He then taught at Oklahoma Christian University before coming to Abilene Christian University in 2005, retiring as professor emeritus in 2017 due to a severe chronic pain. Glenn now spends his time writing for the church. Along with short essays he has published four books, including The God who Saves: An Introduction to the Message of the Old Testament (2015), and Hurting with God: Learning to Lament with the Psalms (2012). Glenn and his wife Dana continue to live in Abilene, Texas.

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Author:  Publish Date: January 10, 2018
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The CHARIS website hosts conversations of and about Churches of Christ. In partnership with the ACU Library and the Siburt Institute for Church Ministry at Abilene Christian University (Abilene, TX), the website is supported and led by the Center for Heritage and Renewal in Spirituality (CHARIS) at ACU. The Center’s mission is to renew Christian spirituality through engagement of Christian heritage, at Abilene Christian University and beyond. The views expressed on the CHARIS website are those of the various authors, and do not necessarily represent the views of Abilene Christian University or CHARIS at ACU. Questions or comments about the CHARIS website can be directed to charis @ acu.edu.

2017-18 CHARIS Editorial Board:
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Dr. Jason Fikes
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Mac Ice
Chai Green
Tammy Marcelain
Molly Scherer
Dr. John Weaver

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