Last night, I sat in front of my television until after midnight. I watched with a mixture of disbelief and disgust the unbelievable story of Ferguson. There have been conflicting reports as to who initiated last night’s confusion whether with molotov cocktails from the protesters or tear gas from the police officers. At this point, I don’t care who started it. It just needs to stop.
Someone needs to be a hero and/or heroine. As members of the community, we are responsible to obey the laws and as police officers who “serve and protect” these communities, we are called to maintain order according to the same agreed upon laws. I concur with Governor Jay Nixon who spoke today of the “fear to hear.” I think everyone is afraid to hear the truth, that Michael Brown is guilty of some punishable crime (though not by death) or that the still unidentified police officer is guilty of the unthinkable, raising himself above the law and killing an innocent an unarmed teenager.
Right now, it seems that protestors and police can only come face to face as a sort of stand off, that we can stand our ground but not bow our heads together. But, I agree with the President who suggested in a speech made this afternoon that we “take a step back.” I think that when we don’t know what to say to each other– as cocktails and rubber bullets are not effective communicators or mediators– that prayer is essential.
I’ll be an intercessor and I know that I do not stand alone. There are many who are praying for the peace of Ferguson but for those of us who decided to make it a “day of rage,” take the road less traveled: submit to the Highest Authority and bow your heads with me:
We call upon Your name because it is above all others, unable to be corrupted or co-opted. You are Justice and we appeal to You to “renew the right spirit within us” (Psalm 51.10). Remind us that while we are made in Your image, You are not defined by our actions or inactions. But, You are God alone and besides You, there is no other (First Samuel 2.2).
Quiet our souls within us and settle our thoughts on Your unconditional love and ultimate will. Remind us that “all power belongs to You” (Psalm 62.11). Say again to us that the earth is Yours, that Ferguson is yours (Psalm 24.1). Remind us that Your truth prevails, that You are not beholden to statistical data nor the American history of race relations. You are God alone, incorruptible and incontestable.
Let the truth be the narrator. Don’t allow our desire for position or power, our emotions or our history to talk over what needs to be said. We confess the case is already solved and that Your justice is already done through Your Son, Jesus Christ, that You are the Word, the first and final say, the Alpha and Omega.
Speak to our hearts through Your holy and sacred Word and to the hearts of those impacted by the infectious life and untimely death of Mr. Michael Brown. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.