On Fridays, we come together to pray for a change in the President, and, barring that change; a change in the Presidency.
We join our voices in the chorus of Americans calling for justice for George Floyd; justice for black, brown, Latino/Latina, Asian/Pacific Islander, and native peoples; justice for all those who are hurt and harmed in our country by racist policies and practices.
We reject the use of force against peaceful protesters exercising their God-given right of the freedom of expression and right to petition the government for the redress of grievances.
We are compelled by the great commandment to love our neighbors as we love ourselves, and by the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States –
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
This week we watched the President of the United States violate both of these foundational and indispensable principles.
We were appalled when the President ordered the peaceful protesters to be forcibly removed from Lafayette Park, only so he could walk through it to stand in front of a church to use it as a backdrop and have a photo taken of him holding up a Bible.
So, this week we urgently pray for a change in the Presidency. And for a limit to the damage done by Mr. Trump in the days he remains in that role.
Prayer 1 – May we be reminded of Jesus’ teaching that “when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others.” – Matthew 6:5.
God who loves and calls us to justice, we recognize that many people, including this President, seek to use faith in selfish ways only to benefit themselves. We pray that people will come around this President and council him to not use the Bible, nor other symbols of faith, as props. We pray he will follow the calling of the ancient Scriptures to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly.
Prayer 2 – May we be reminded that “God will bring into judgment both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time to judge every deed.” – Ecclesiastes 3:17
God who loves and calls us to justice, we pray that you judge the deeds of the President. We recognize that there is always time to repent and to change, but we pray that that repentance and change comes from a man who is no longer able to lead so many astray as President, and that Trump resigns the office before he can do more damage.
Prayer 3 – May we be reminded that “When justice is done, it brings joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers.” – Proverbs 21:15
God who loves and calls us to justice, may we always seek to find joy in justice. May we conduct ourselves in a way that puts us among those righteous who seek justice. We pray that President Trump reverses course, and that if he doesn’t, that he is filled with the holy terror reserved for those who perpetrate wrongdoing on God’s people.
Prayer 4 – May we be reminded that “Evildoers do not understand what is right, but those who seek the LORD understand it fully.” – Proverbs 28:5
God who loves and calls us to justice, we pray that Trump begins to understand how wrong his actions, policies, and words are. We pray that those around him can show him the way of justice, and that he steps aside promptly if he cannot learn these truths.
Prayer 5 – May we be reminded of the Scripture that says “But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” – Amos 5:24
God who loves and calls us to justice, may we remember when you told us about justice as a force, not just an idea. A force that rolls like the river itself, sweeping up in it all that resists the flow forward. We pray that justice sweeps up Trump, and swiftly carries him forward to change or resignation.
Prayer 6 – May we be reminded that the Scripture says “And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” – Micah 6:8
God who loves and calls us to justice, we pray for a President who acts justly, shows mercy, and walks humbly. We pray for a shift in the office from the current standard of rash decisions, coarse words, and arrogant discourse. We pray that justice, mercy, and humility fill every decision going forward, and that a President who can embody these virtues comes into office.
Prayer 7 – May we be reminded that we are commanded “Do not pervert justice.” – Leviticus 19:15
God who loves and calls us to justice, we pray for the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others whose lives have been claimed by white supremacy, anger, and injustice. We pray for a President bold enough to speak out against the institutionalized racism in our nation, and just enough to do something about those injustices.