FROM US TO GOD
NEW YORK CITY, 2016
God in your holy word Paul asked his friend Timothy, his peeps (aka faith community at Ephesus) to give thanksgiving as they pray for those in authority.
So there must also be a prayer request you are sending me today.
O.K., but God, cut me a little slack; I’m having a hard time with the thanksgiving part.
I’m not feeling much thanksgiving these days for those in authority, especially the political kind and I’m certainly not feeling like giving much thanks for this crop of wannabe’s, aka candidates. (God, you could have done better on that score – IJS.)
And as for those in authority from all parts of the world who are gathering nearby at the United Nations, I’m not giving thanks for the amount of progress they are making toward world peace. Sometimes it’s so little progress that I’m tempted to think their main purpose must be to disrupt our traffic, buses and parking for the two weeks they’re around.
So I’ll pray as Paul asks, but I’m modifying my prayer to suit my mood and, maybe, I hope my prayer is on target for the needs of our times.
So, Lord, I lift my up my hands without anger or argument and offer my prayer of supplication for all in authority and for all those who seek to be in authority and power. Lord, they need your help, so we might live in tranquility and dignity. Lord, I pray for those who gather at the U.N. as they strive to foster peace. Even if peace is too big a reach, at least may they find ways to reduce violence, terror and the displacement of people.
Lord when I pray that “WE,” may live tranquil lives, I mean our families, our neighbors, our nation and your entire world.
Lord, I want to make sure you know that even though it’s hard and sometimes I don’t always act on it very well – the “WE” of my prayer also includes those who:
- disagree with me;
- are different than me;
- speak different languages or come from different countries;
- have different social views;
- call you by a different name than I do, and
- God, this may be hardest, I even pray for Boston Red Sox fans.
God I include all these because I cannot truly live in peace and live in dignity if others do not.
Lord, I know this is a big ask but you are a big God and you have a good team: Father, Son & Spirit– God, please get to work on it. We need you.
Lord, let me end simply:
Lord may those in authority, now, and in the future, in the United States and in every country of the world lead us to live lives in tranquility and dignity.