Jesus. There is so much hurt around me and I want to take it all away. There are some people you just want to wrap up in your love and save. I know that is your job, Jesus, but I’m sorry for the ways I haven’t been your hands and feet. I should have done so much more. I can’t change the past, and you Jesus are in charge of the future.

Just like you call us in so many ways, thwarting our attempts to have life apart from you, you use pain to bring beauty and love. Jesus, right now, your people, your church is not showing that in so many areas. We condemn, we discourage, we exclude. We laugh and point, we stare down our noses, judging our brothers and sisters. We get the commandments all out of order. We forget that the whole law is summed up in love. We’d rather point out the failures of others than face our own brokenness. Jesus, we are meant to be a light to the world, shining in the darkness, but instead we are perpetuating the darkness, adding to it. Not that everything or everyone in the church is wrong or bad, but Jesus, your people are causing so much pain. You gave your life for the church, you poured out your love for us in your blood and we are called to do the same. Lord, we have caused pain and we have condemned, please, help us learn to bring beauty and the grace and forgiveness you offer.

Pray without ceasing. You speak to us when we are listening, Lord. Sometimes even when we arent. Lord, you are intimately concerned with your children, with your bride. Let me come to you with praise and thanksgiving, with the crying of my heart, with my thoughts, my dreams, my hopes, my fears. Lord, let me rest in you, and help me to lift up your people and seek you first.

Mighty Fortress. That is my God. You are strong, able to withstand the world and all it can throw at you. You offer me that protection and that strength. Forgive me for my weaknesses. Forgive me for the times I look only to myself, when you are standing in front of me. Forgive me for ignoring your call and being content to stay where I am comfortable. Let me be caught up in the reckless raging fury that is your love.

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