Psalm 127
Dave Linde

November 7, 2021

Heavenly Father, praise be to you for your sovereignty and your providence.  You are the one whose actions are ultimate.  The house is ultimately built by you.  The city is ultimately guarded by you.  You work while we sleep.  We praise you, Lord, that in the mysterious interweaving of your actions and our actions, yours are ultimate, yours are foundational, yours are indispensable.  You are the one who is powerful, wise, and loving.  How dependent we are—and how blessed we are to be dependent—on your actions, your work, your preeminence.

Lord, we think of the house and building it.  We think of the city and guarding it.  Whether that house and city is our family, our church, our community, our culture, our nation, save us from building in vain!  Save us from guarding in vain!  Save us from living our lives in vain—from pursuing our plans, engaging in our work, being busy in our activities apart from trusting in you and your ultimate will and work.  Save our church family from being built in vain.  Save the city of God, the collective life of followers of Jesus, from being guarded in vain.  We repent of our unbelief and self-reliance.  We turn afresh to you and to recalibrating our lives with the ultimate reality that is you.  Save us from living any other way than God-built, God-guarded, God-centered, God-displaying.

Thank you, Father, for the blessing of being your beloved.  Thank you for the gift of sleep you give to your beloved.  You love us and bless us with sleep.  May we embrace this gift and not refuse it because of anxious toil, wearying labor, self-reliant long hours that spring from unbelief.  May our sleep express our trust.  May we account your work—including the work you do while we sleep—more important than our own.

Heavenly Father, thank you for children—for that amazing gift, coming ultimately from you, that is central to building the house and guarding the city.  Thank you for the wisdom and perspective of this psalm with regard to children.

  • We pray for young children in our church family being nurtured at home.
  • We pray for adolescents finding their way to adulthood.
  • We lift up to you the strategic opportunities and the constant challenges that parents face in raising children—especially in today’s world.
  • We intercede for children with special needs.
  • We pray about the financial demands of providing for children.
  • We pray about the hard work and the long hours involved in building a family and, as it were, guarding a city.
  • We intercede for parent-child relationships that are strained, conflicted, estranged.
  • We remember the sorrow of the absence of children where they have been deeply desired, and the sorrow of the loss of children whose death has preceded our own.
  • We remember grandchildren and grandparents and the challenges and opportunities of those relationships, and of the unique needs of grandparents who are raising grandchildren.
  • We lift up to you our Explorers and Edge ministries, the children and teens who are part of these ministries, the teams of leaders, Katie and Jennifer, and the opportunities and obstacles in these endeavors.
  • We pray amid, and for, our culture, with its widespread ambivalence—even animus—toward children, its marginalizing of children, its abuse of children, its disregard for children as it seeks to build the house and guard the city in its own way, according to its own wisdom, relying on its own savvy and resources.

Lord, save us, your people, from viewing children differently than you do.  Save us from building our house and guarding our city in ways apart from you.  Bless the building of our house, the guarding of our city, through your gift of children.  Save us from the futility of failing to see your gift of children as part of your ultimate work.  Save us from the futility of regarding children as a reason for self-reliant, frantic, resentful labor rather than a cause for trust and gratitude.  Build us, guard us, through the next generations.   Send out our younger generations as arrows—aimed rightly, released wisely—who will contribute to the safety of your people, and who will not be put to shame when called to account for their faith in Jesus.

Thank you for the generations represented in our church family.  Strengthen our generational bonds, our intergenerational influences and maturing.  Bless the passing on of the faith—the gospel of Jesus Christ—from generation to generation.  May it lead to spiritual generations as well, that others might become your children through faith in Jesus Christ.

We pray, Father, because of Jesus Christ our Lord.  And all God’s people said, “Amen!”