God, you have called us to joy, but in these peculiar times, we frequently only see misery.
You have called us to love, but more and more, we can only see hate.
You have called us to gratitude, but often, it seems we can only see entitlement.
You have called us to peace, but everything seems to point to chaos.
You have called us to unity, but we seem more divided with every day that goes by.
Lord, we pray for eyes that can see beyond the circumstances of our world.
Replace our consistent response of selfishness with compassion and mercy.
Remind us that gratitude turns us back to you, and that, in turning to you we are able to see the light that is not extinguished by the darkness.
God, may we live in unity even in the midst of separation, may we live in peace even in the midst of struggle.
Lord, in this time of strangeness, this unprecedented time of division,
We choose to make a joyful noise even when we cannot hear the sounds of others.
We strive to look at others in the same way you look at them,
We yearn to see beyond the surface to understand what you know.
We seek to noise heard from our lives to come from an ever increasing knowledge of you.
God, show us our own hatred, our own self-centeredness, our own bigotry, our own racism, and everything that keeps us from seeing and hearing as you see and hear.
Give us the strength to lay those things down and, instead, pick up compassion, mercy, love, peace, and especially joy.
Lord, may our lives be a loud sound of joy before you.
May that sound be heard through our lives,
May we then be able to speak the words that have been affirmed through the sounds of our lives
May our isolation, our separation, our fears, our pain, be replaced with those things heard in the life of Jesus.
May our lives be the very imprint of you.