Prayer for our Nation

My heart is broken for the brokenness of our nation. Whatever our politics. Whatever our theology. Whatever our skin color. I believe we can all agree our nation is divided and seething with anger and disrespect that is unhealthy and unholy.

I am outraged by the act of police brutality and excessive use of force that killed George Floyd. The officers involved have been charged and, if found guilty, should receive the full punishment of the law, without bias.

Peaceful protests against police brutality and racism are prophetic in the tradition of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and are to be celebrated. When people stand up against evil and oppression, it is holy activity. Racism is sin. It is evil. It has no place in the heart of a follower of Jesus, and every one of us who know Him ought to pray that love dominates our hearts, our minds and our actions. Period.

I am also outraged by acts of violence and vandalism that have changed peaceful protests into something else. I have found myself wondering this week if we might actually be on the brink of civil war. Not a culture war. An actual war. God help us.

God has called His people to the Cross. May anything in me that contributes to unfair or unjust treatment of others, individually or as a nation, be crucified with Christ. Having died to myself, may I live a life that sees and treats other human beings as image-bearers of the God who created us.

I am a man of prayer. I believe prayer matters. I turn to prayer when I am clearly in over my head. I believe Jesus meant it when He said, "Apart from Me you can do nothing." (John 15:5) I pray for awakening in our nation, because I am convinced that government cannot deliver us from this brokenness and sin. Only God can. And I do my little part to live and work for Godly treatment of others. I strive to treat others with respect and love, without regard to categories like race or ethnicity or politics or religious faith (or lack of it).

Let's pray and work for the Kingdom of God to be established on earth as much as it is in our power to make that happen. Pray and work for people to find Jesus Christ and the freedom from sin and despair and anger and prejudice that only He can give. Pray and be the most Godly people we can be, with God's Holy Spirit making transformation in our hearts and lives. Let's pray that God's will is done, and that we are part of the solution, and not part of the problem.

Father, I need you. We need you. Our nation needs you. Root sin out of our hearts and lives. All sin. Sin that leads to hatred and violence. Sin that stands by silently while others are treated unfairly. Come, Holy Spirit. Bring an awakening. Hear our prayer. Forgive our sin. Heal our land. We need you. In Jesus' strong name.

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