God of life,
you need none of the hassle and pain of being our God.
Yet with grace and patience you love us
even though this love must break your heart.
It must have broken your heart
to see your Son crucified,
enduring the suffering that should have been ours.
And it must break your heart now
to see us live the way we do
as Jesus had never lived or spoken,
or given his life so that we could have a life.
But his resurrection shows that you are a God
who never gives up.
So let us know your grace
not like something cheap we pick up in a cut-price market,
but like treasure we’ve found in a field
which changes our lives
and fills us with hope
and sets us off in a new direction.
Let the grace that cost the life of your Son
and broke your own heart
be the grace that heals our broken hearts
and helps us to love again.
Teach us how to live as grateful people,
healed on the inside, shining like lights
in all the ways we love and serve and forgive
those around us,
and trying to be for others
the healing you, in Christ, have been for us, Amen.
The Year of the Lord’s Favor
61 The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,[a]
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.