It’s time to pray!
When I don’t understand… When there seem to be no easy answers, or any answers at all... My first instinct is to pray...
For a lot of people, and for a myriad of different reasons, the last couple of weeks have been more than challenging. The world is hurting. The country of Haiti has been in turmoil since the assasination of their President and then a 7.2 earthquake this week. The chaos in Afghanistan has captured the attention of people across the globe. Covid-19 and the Delta variant are real and continue to grow and threaten lives. It’s time to pray, pray and pray some more.
Sometimes it’s funny the things we remember. When I was in high school, the Clinton–Lewinsky Scandal hit the news. Our youth minister challenged our group to pray for those in authority. He encouraged us to pray for them, regardless of their politics, ideals or life choices. I prayed then - some, but I really didn’t take his admonition seriously until Tuesday, September 11, 2001. Since that day I have consistently, at least weekly, prayed for our President, Speaker of the House, Senate Majority and Minority Leaders, our governor, mayor and city council members.
Mountainview, it’s time to pray… Pray for those in authority, regardless of their party or stance. It’s time to be true disciples of Jesus, not “cultural Christians” who promote this or that cause or passion instead of “keeping the main thing the main thing”...which is to love God and love people. Pray earnestly, pray without bias...
Here’s what Paul wrote to Timothy.
The first thing I want you to do is pray.
Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know.
Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well
so we can be quietly about our business of living simply,in humble contemplation.
This is the way our Savior God wants us to live.
1 Timothy 2:1-3 MSG
Why should we pray? Here’s another translation of the above quote:
...that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.
This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior,
who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge
of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between
God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all…
1 Timothy 2:2-6 ESV
As disciples of Jesus, we are called to be faithful to this message of scripture. We have not been called to dehumanize those we disagree with. And Paul’s words certainly do not give us permission to restrict our prayers to those with whom we happen to agree... We must not be so self righteous that we become the very things we criticize in others. Let’s practice the “one anothers” in the New Testament, even if we don’t feel like it…
We are called to demonstrate God’s love to the world, especially the poor, the marginalized, the widow, the children, the foreigner, and those with no voice. There are so many small gestures that elevate the common good of all people. This “small stuff” is what Christianity has always been about.
I’m grateful that our leadership allowed me time away for a much-needed family vacation. Don’t you appreciate the great job our staff did while we were gone? Pastor Craig and Pastor Christian delivered great messages which were not only faithful to the text in Mark, but thought-provoking and action-stirring. Our plan is to continue through Mark until December.
Finally, I want to assure you that we have embraced being more creative in leading our church, while honoring safety guidelines. I know the current scenario will not last forever. Thank you for journeying with us.
Grace & Peace,