Jane Pauley

When I was about 3 or 4 years old I would watch television for about 15 minutes after breakfast and before my mom would take me to pre-K. We called pre-K “3-year-old kindergarten,” if I recall correctly.

Well, one day I was sitting there watching Jane Pauley on the Today Show on NBC. It was probably around 1978 and I loved her smile and just thought she was the bees knees. So, I started waving at her and I kept waving and waving. And, I kid you not, after what seemed like a lot of waving on my part, she paused speaking for a moment, laughed a little, and waved back at the camera.

Now, I can’t explain this other than to conclude it must just be a delightful coincidence. I have no idea how to account for it, but this flat out happened exactly as I present it above and it is one of my strongest memories from childhood.

Congregational Prayer, 1/3/2021

Please join me as we go to God in prayer.

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we pray to you in peace. “How awesome are your deeds! So great is your power that your enemies submit themselves to you. All the earth worships you and sings praises to your name.”

Lord of hosts, we pray for the Church, that you would preserve her faithful; and for her ministers, that you would give them delight in this joyful season and restful reflection on the mystery of the incarnation that they preach. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth! We pray for mothers and their children, especially infants, and for the unborn at Grace Presbyterian. We pray that you, Father, who has perfected your praise in the mouths of babes and nursing infants would turn the hearts of all who, like King Herod, would despise children or destroy the unborn for selfish gain. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

God of all comfort, we pray for all women who mourn the loss of infants, that you would give them comfort in their grief and fix our eyes on Christ, who for a time was spared, but has shed His blood for our salvation. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Gracious God, we pray for fathers, mothers, and all guardians, that they would see their children as undeserved gifts from God’s hand, be strengthened to bear the cross, and remain faithful examples of the Christian faith to them. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Eternal Lord, Ruler of all, we pray for those in positions of authority among us, especially our Aldermen, our Mayor, our state representatives and senators, our Governor, our National senators and representatives, our President, judges at all levels, and police at all levels, that you would guide them by your Spirit to be high in purpose, wise in counsel, firm in good resolution, and unwavering in duty; and for our nation and its people in this new year, that we may be governed quietly and peaceably. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Lord of hosts, for all those in need, we pray:

For those with health needs and their caregivers: [names redacted]

For those with other needs: [names redacted]

Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

Lord of the easy yoke, for all who are burdened and come to this worship service today for rest, we pray that your Holy Spirit would preserve us from stubbornness, impenitence, and unbelief, cleanse us from our unrighteousness, and clothe us with the righteousness purchased with Christ’s blood. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.

O Lord God, heavenly Father, You allowed Your Son, Jesus Christ, to become a stranger and sojourner in Egypt for our sakes and led Him safely home to His fatherland. Mercifully grant that we poor sinners, who are strangers and sojourners in this perilous world, may soon be called home to our true fatherland, the kingdom of heaven, where we will live in eternal joy and glory; through the same Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, and who taught us to pray: [Lord’s Prayer]

(What is this prayer? Read about how and why I prepare these.)