O God, Father in heaven, in the name of your Son, Jesus the Messiah, and by the power of your Holy Spirit, I pray…
First, I ask why. Why, why, why? And why the children? It’s not that I expect an answer because there are no answers. I just have to ask why?
In the meantime I also want to pray for the comfort of those families who have lost those whom they love dearly – both children and adults – and now grieve with a pain so deep that words cannot express. I also pray for the community of Newtown, Connecticut. I know they must have many questions just as I do and I know that they feel the hurt, the anger, and the pain of this senseless act of violence. Please bring them together as a community to support each other and be a shoulder for each other to lean on and cry on. Ultimately, I ask that you please bring them comfort, hope, and peace.
But my prayer is not just for them Lord. My prayer is also for America as a nation. This violence happens too often and every time, we avoid asking the deeper questions. Those of us on the right want to blame the perpetrators of violence while those of us on the left blame the guns but we never want to look our mirror. Your word says,
“…There is no faithfulness, no love,
no acknowledgment of God in the land.
There is only cursing, lying and murder,
stealing and adultery;
they break all bounds,
and bloodshed follows bloodshed.
Because of this the land dries up,
and all who live in it waste away;
the beasts of the field, the birds in the sky
and the fish in the sea are swept away.*
But now it is us who are being swept away into a sea of depravity and godlessness. Please awaken us, O Lord! Please awaken your people to speak up and live as witness of Jesus alone. Help us put aside this American dream and seek your kingdom instead. Teach us to walk in the way of Jesus and have mercy on us, so that one day your righteousness, your justice, and your peace will be our way!
* Taken from Hosea 4:1-3.