I live in North County St. Louis, less than six miles from the rioting and looting that has resulted from the shooting of Michael Brown by a police officer. My heart has been so grieved as I’ve watched these events unfolding – from the sadness of the shooting itself to the chaos that has surrounded us tonight. I knew I would not be sleeping anyway, so I decided to spend the time in prayer for my city and asked Facebook friends to join me. To help promote even more prayer for this situation, I’m sharing one of my posts here:
Given that the Church is called to continue the ministry of Christ, I offer this prayer based on Luke 4:18-19 …
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me” – Lord, help us to recognize that You are with us. Your Spirit enables Your people to have wisdom and power. Help us to be sensitive to the leading of Your Spirit, act and speak with wisdom, and be confident in Your power to handle this situation.
“Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor.” – Help us to remember that the ultimate solution to all societal ills is to lead people to You. I pray that we will be living examples of the power of the gospel to transform lives. May people see hope in this message. I pray we live in a manner worthy of this calling.
“He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives” – Dear God, I pray that people would be freed of the chains that bind them to the sins that lie behind the chaos we see. Hatred, bigotry, judgmentalism, pride, greed, envy, lust for power and possessions – free us from these and all other things that are in opposition to Your truth.
“And recovery of sight to the blind” – In times like these, Lord, it is so easy to put blinders on as to the thoughts, opinions, needs, and feelings of others. In our desire to state our case or make our point, we turn a blind eye to anything that does not fit into our agendas. Help us, Lord, to see clearly. Help us to open our eyes to the needs of those around us and to look at others through Your eyes.
“To set free those who are oppressed” – Help us to remember that it is our mission to speak for the oppressed. Let us not pretend that oppression does not exist. Let us see it for the evil that it is and work towards justice.
“To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.” – Help us to have hope in You, Lord.