In light of recent events, a common phrase you will read or hear is “Praying for Dallas” or “Praying for….“ fill in the blank. It’s a phrase that far to often ends with being said and not done. I truly believe it’s not because we don’t want to pray; it’s simply because we struggle with knowing what to pray. I am keeping this post very simple and to the point. If you struggle with what to pray, first and foremost be honest. “For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7b
Below are a few prayers that can be used to aid us in putting words to our struggle of knowing what to pray.
(These have been pulled from a Book of Common Prayers)
Prayer for the Human Family
O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer for Peace and Unity
Eternal God, in whose perfect kingdom no sword is drawn but the sword of righteousness, no strength known but the strength of love: So mightily spread abroad your Spirit, that all peoples may be gathered under the banner of the Prince of Peace, who is Jesus Chirst, as children of one Father; to whom be dominion and glory, now and forever.
Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may so move every human heart [and especially the hearts of the people of this land], that barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease; that our divisions being healed, we may live in justice and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer for the Church
Gracious Father, we pray for the Church. Fill it with all truth, in all truth with all peace. Where it is corrupt, purify it; where it is in error, direct it; where in any thing it is amiss, reform it. Where it is right, strengthen it; where it is in want, provide for it; where it is divided, reunite it; for the sake of Jesus Christ your Son our Savior. Amen.
Secondly, pray the Scriptures. Open the Psalms, read through Lamentations, follow the order of the Lord’s prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) Whatever you do …don’t not pray. Prayer is powerful. Prayer changes things. Prayer changes US. Let’s not just say we will pray. Let’s actually do it.
Oh, Lord teach us to pray.
I am no expert on any topic. I am writing just to share in my journey of learning to abide in my Maker.