Praying for reconciliation in the face of racial hostility

Given recent events in the US, I feel it appropriate to pause from my regular posts on The Surprising God to address the shocking and divisive racial hostility erupting in many places and ways. This hostility flies in the face of all our Lord Jesus Christ stands for and, through the Spirit, is working toward in our world through his ongoing ministry of reconciliation.

Source
Toward the goal of reconciliation (and the transformation of the heart it entails), I offer below a litany (responsive prayer) by Rich Villodas (8/2017) for the body of Christ to pray in worship. Oh Lord, you are making all things new. Please lead us to participate in what you are doing.

A Litany for Racial Hostility in our Country

Leader: Lord Jesus, your Kingdom is good news for a world caught in racial hostility. We ask that you would give us grace for the deep challenges facing our country.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new. 

Leader: Lord, we confess our anger and our deep sadness for the hatred in our world as well as our collective sense of weakness to see this world healed through our own strength.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord, we honestly confess that our country has a long history of racial oppression, that racism has been a strategy of evil powers and principalities.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord, we confess that the gospel is good news for the oppressed and the oppressor. Both are raised up. Both are liberated, but in different ways. The oppressed are raised up from the harsh burden of inferiority. The oppressor from the destructive illusion of superiority.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord, we confess that the gospel is your power to form a new people not identified by dominance and superiority, but by unity in the Spirit.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord, we ask that you would help us name our part in this country’s story of racial oppression and hostility. Whether we have sinned against others by seeing them as inferior, or whether we have been silent in the face of evil. Forgive us of our sin.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord we pray for our enemies. For those who have allowed destructive powers to work through them. Grant them deliverance through your mighty power.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord, we ask that you would form us to be us peacemakers. May we be people who speak the truth in love as we work for a reconciled world.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Leader: Lord we commit our lives to you, believing that you are working in the world in spite of destructive powers and principalities. Bring healing to those who are hurt, peace to those who are anxious, and love to those who are fearful. We wait for you, O Lord. Make haste to help us.
Response: Oh Lord, only you can make all things new.

Comments

  1. Thanks be to our God that he is leading our denomination and the body of Christ to speak out against racial discrimination in all it's forms. I exprienced this horror in my own family. I know, personally, how destructive it can be.

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