praying for refugees and asylum seekers

Inspired by The Children’s Society’s focus on asylum seeking children this epiphany (see 28.12.12 blog post), we spent our morning worship today praying for refugees and asylum seekers.

We were also shocked and humbled to read some of the detail provided by The Refugee Council – check out their statistics about the true picture here.

As is so often the case when we pray for refugees, asylum seekers and displaced people, we come back to Psalm 126 in The Message, and to this prayer which we based on it:

It seemed like a dream, too good to be true, when GOD returned Zion’s exiles.
They laughed, they sang,
They couldn’t believe their good fortune.
They were the talk of the nations—
“GOD was wonderful to them,
He worked amazing miracles on their behalf
And brought them home.”

It seemed like a dream, too good to be true, when Jesus returned us to the Father,
We laughed, we sang,
We couldn’t believe the grace that welcomed us.
We are forever saying and singing among the nations –
“God has done amazing things,
His resurrection miracles on our behalf
Have brought us home.”

And now, GOD, do it again—
For the refugees and displaced peoples of our world.
Restore the fortunes of those who have lost everything;
Bring to safety those who have fled war zones,
Famine, drought or persecution.
May they find refuge in the welcome of strangers,
Shelter in bricks and mortar,
And favour in national and international law and policy.

God, be wonderful to them,
Work amazing miracles on their behalf.
May they experience streams flowing in the desert of their lives,
And leave behind their heavy hearts as they come to a new home laughing,
Burdened only by armloads of blessing.

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