Prayer is about opening up and listening. We think it’s about talking to God. But it’s not about our talking; prayer is about our listening. In our prayers we listen to the brokenness of our fellow human beings.
Have you noticed how after every terrible tragedy in the world, politicians use the same clichéd line – “Our prayers are with the victims and their families?”
A Las Vegas shooting happens. “Our prayers are with the victims and their families.” A Texas church is the most recent scene of a mass shooting. “Our prayers are with the victims and their families.” But that phrase feels as hollow as an old soup can to me.
- We can’t muster enough courage to outlaw assault weapons in America, but our prayers are with them?
- We can’t begin to address the culture of gun violence in America, but our prayers are with them?
- We continue to line the pockets of politicians with money from the gun lobby, but our prayers are with them?
- We cut social services for mental health, but our prayers are with them?
- We continue to give toy guns to children, but our prayers are with them?
- Hollywood produces movies filled with gun violence, but our prayers are with them?
My dear dear friends . . . prayer is not about getting stuff from God; prayer is about getting in touch with the stuff within ourselves. And that means in touch with the deepest brokenness of our fellow human beings – and then trying to do something about it!
I’m trying to Take a Breath but I can barely do it today. Let’s pray. Let’s act. Let’s stand up. Let’s speak up. Let’s point fingers. Let’s speak up from our pulpits. Let’s write Congress. Let’s do whatever it takes to bring peace, peace, peace to our nation.