Here is the transcript of Pastor Jones’ prayer before the City Council Meeting.
Great wise and sovereign God, we are grateful for the freedom we enjoy and by which we govern ourselves. We thank you also for those who govern us and recognize that it is by your providence and favor that they govern.
These are distressing times, O Lord, and too often we have allowed the turmoil and chaos of our world to afflict our souls so that rather than banding together, we have, in our self-sufficiency, lashed out at others and sought our own way rather than the way of peace and unity. We made enemies of those whom we should have made friends and pushed away those who could partner with us in the building of a better community.
In so doing we have squandered opportunities to bring peace and prosperity to our city and to be a shining light for cities around us of how to band together to make a better world.
Forgive us for this selfishness and the personal ambition that blinded us to these opportunities to partner together for peace and growth for our community. Strengthen us to humble ourselves and to seek the wisdom that is greater than ourselves.
May we exemplify what is spoken of in Scripture: “Righteousness exalts a nation.”
Help these in authority to remember that they have not been appointed to rule, but have been chosen to serve.
May they recognize that what needs to be done here is greater than any one of them could accomplish and in recognizing this may they turn their hearts and minds together toward the greater wisdom that comes from on high.
May you empower them to serve in wisdom, humility, honor, and compassion. May they seek the good of their constituents and their community more than their own good. May they refuse to take offense and give offense and instead serve in unity, valuing the good of their community above their own pride and self-interest. May they embrace their constituents and see the problems of their community as their own.
May we as citizens honor their commitment and seek to work with them rather than against them. May we see them not as our adversaries but as those who have been raised up, in God’s providence, to bring peace and prosperity to our part of this great nation.
As this nation has always been a haven for the outcast, the disenfranchised, the poor, those without any other opportunity, may we all now remember to care for those outcast, poor, and disenfranchised in our own midst.
Through wise governance and cooperation may we realize a community characterized by peace, both on the streets and in our homes; characterized by unity, not only between citizens but also between citizens and government; characterized by prosperity, both financial and spiritual; and characterized by hope, with a joy and optimism about our future and the future of those generations that follow us.
Protect our troops, and all those who represent our nation and fight to preserve our way of life. Protect our police and firefighters who stand ready to protect us when called.
And when all is said and done may we remember your gracious and providential hand of blessing that has brought us to this point.
In Your Name,