On Sunday, June 21, 2020, Brian McPeters prayed a Prayer of Praise and Matthew Williams preached the message, “Look In and Look Up″ as part of our interim sermon series A Faith that Works. To listen to this message again, click here.
Prayer of Praise:

Lord, on a day where we celebrate fathers, we thank you that you are our perfect and awesome Father.  Heavenly Father, we thank you that you are the God of justice.  As in Amos 5:24, we cry “….but let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.”  But alas this morning, Lord, in our country, our state and our neighborhood justice does not roll like a river.  Lord, we know that your justice is most visible by gazing at the cross of Jesus Christ.  For on that cross, the Father punished his only and perfect Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.  Jesus, you were punished as if you were the wicked sinful rebel in our stead.  Jesus, you were crushed for your people’s iniquities, and we celebrate this morning that you triumphed over the punishment and death we deserved when you rose on the third day.  This is the message of your Gospel.  God, it is in the hope of the Gospel that we see your justice revealed.

This morning we ask in the power of the Gospel and the Holy Spirit that we can do as you told the prophet Isaiah 1:17, “learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the cause of the widow.”  Lord, in our day we ask that you would help Kingsway, your local church, do right and seek justice for the oppressed around us.  Lord, we especially pray this morning for our African-American brothers and sisters.  Lord, they very likely awake this morning with a mix of emotions that include anger, fear, frustration and weariness because of how they have and maybe will be treated because of the color of their skin.  Lord, we ask for your justice to be on display to end this oppression.  Lord, grant us unity as brothers and sisters in Christ no matter the color of our skin, and would you bring your perfect peace and justice here.  Lord, we are confident you have the power to bring justice, as we grapple and struggle with overcoming the sin of racial oppression and injustice in our country.

God we can ask this big task of you, because we know of your power and your goodness.  We praise you for your goodness, and we praise you for your power.  Power that can heal us from our sin, and even power enough to cause an end this pandemic.  Power also to help us to be your church and your ministers of reconciliation to those around us.  Lord, we thank you for how you’ve done this already, but we ask for more.  Lord, move your kingdom forward, so that your name be made great.  Lord, continue to you conform your church to the image of Jesus Christ.  We desire to see your justice and power here amongst your people, and we long to be with you.  For it is in the powerful name of Jesus, your Son and our Savior, that we pray.  Amen.

Discussion Questions:
  1. Matthew said that the answer to all of our conflict with men is found in our relationship with God. Do you see this to be true in your life? If so, how?
  2. Think back on some of your most recent conflicts. What it is you wanted that the other person wasn’t giving you?
  3. Is it hard for you to bring your desires to God?
  4. Do you ask God to help you understand the motivations for your desires?
  5. Do you think your struggle are too big for God?
  6. How does knowing that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble help you this week as you engage with others?
Morgan began attending KingsWay with her family when she was in high school. She graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a BFA and relocated to Minnesota for work. Morgan moved back to the warmer climate of Richmond in 2015 and became a member of KingsWay in 2016. Morgan owns her own business and likes to read in her free time.

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