An earnest prayer for the people of this tortured land.
Father, on this Sunday and henceforth, bless those who will enter at your courts and gates, seeking your countenance and counsel. Bless even those who know you not. At this moment Lord, this society stands on a precipice, like many in our lives, not one unknown in scripture. For in the most ancient of times, societies had a choice to believe in you and your gifts of grace and deliverance from the wages of sin as well as a grant of your power to resist its temptations, traps, snares, and lures. They also had the choice as to whether to march down the path of war against your people, war against themselves, violence as a solution, hatred, bigotry,and prejudice. In your love you gave them that choice. Alas, many failed to seize the time and the day and as a result we talk about them today in their absence, as cautionary tales concerning the arrogance of humanity and symbols of our capacity for inhumanity despite our roots in divinity. Lord, comfort those who have been the victims of the recent violence at the hands of the mad in mind, or in emotion, or those who think that by killing the innocent, that they will ultimately hold political sway. Those who seek indirect revenge for legitimate wrongs but know not YOUR paths and methods and the certainty of your vengeance for those washed in YOUR spirit. Show us leadership, REAL leadership of your character in the midst of this storm. Show us REAL courage amidst this dark night of fear. Be ever our strong anchor as the winds seek to blow us asunder. Bless all those of faith who are under attack and who are on the verge of losing confidence. Gird their loins, reveal your presence to them, wield your power as is your will to make a way out of this darkness for them and for us all, despite our many failings and unworthiness by your standard. For we know “sometimes the wicked prosper.” If this must be such a time, then enable us to withstand what we must. We shall always remember to give you the praise and the honor for we know there can be no peace without the prince of peace, no justice without the righteous one, having no sin upon Him who can fairly judge, no truth without first the truth of the Creator, no knowledge without knowledge of your kingdom level perspective, no brotherhood and sisterhood, lest there come to be an understanding of our collective adoption in you into the family of God. We thank you for this chance. We pray for the RIGHT choices, not the selfish ones, or the arrogant ones, or the errant ones, but the right ones in our lives and in this society at this time that your Word may be again made manifest in the flesh that if “your people, who are called by your name, will turn from their wicked ways, then will you hear from Heaven and heal their land.” Amen.