Sunday, March 12, 2017

A Prayer

Father, we live among billions and billions of people. Each one of us is doing what seems best to make it through life, day by day. And all of us do that with wounds, wounds from poor decisions that we have made as well as wounds from what others have done to us. In that respect, we are all the same.

But there are also some great differences. The vast majority of people alive in this moment are not Christians, the vast majority. They are not following Jesus as their Lord nor do they look to Him as the one who has come to rescue them. But because of Your kind favor, we are not among them. In this our situation is so very different. The wounds are still there, but we have resources to deal with them, resources that these others do not have.

So, first of all, we want to thank You. There is no good reason why we should not also be among the many, but we aren't. For that we thank You, Father.
But Father, we don't want to just forget these people. So, we pray for these many who are not numbered among Your saints. They are so far from You, alienated from Your Fatherly care, without the hope that the Gospel offers. And while they put a good face on things, down deep their hearts know that something is wrong. They may hide from that reality, but they have some sense of it. And that just makes it all worse, especially when life breaks down in one of the many ways that it can. Father, we want to pray for these many, some of whom we know and some of whom we love. We pray that they would be brought near to You, that they would be included in the number who know You as the wonderful Father that You are.  We know that there is nothing in them to commend to them this blessing. But there is, even now, nothing in us to commend to us this blessing. So, we ask for You to be gracious to them as You have been to us.

We realize, Father, that all of this has something to say about us. You do not send angels to speak the Gospel to those who are not Christians. You use Your Church. You use us. So, deal with us, Father, so that our lives would convey, in clear and powerful ways, what it means to have the hope and the power of the Gospel. Make us more aware of our role in all of this. Make us more aware of the things in our lives that have to go so that we will shine brightly with the results of the Gospel for the world to see. Deal with us so that more them would come and join us in following Jesus, enjoying the blessings as we persevere in the battles. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.

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