Lord, guide us to respond to the movement of Your Spirit and not resist it. “What we are not, make us. What we know not, teach us. What we have not, give us… (Teach us) “about hope instead of weariness; love instead of fear and (reveal) the power of amazing grace instead of evil and hate – hold nothing back” (Rev. Zelda Kennedy).
Give us the courage to examine ourselves and “allow us to see where we have been blind” (Obama), blind to the pain of those around us, and blind to our shared humanity. Let us be the sanctuary from a harsh world. Let our actions tell those we meet, that their lives matter. Let grace surround us. Let light restore us and let love unite us as the body of Christ.
“Don’t let us slip back into comfortable silence and avoid the uncomfortable truth that plagues our society” (Obama). “Our calling, is not just within the walls of this congregation, but the life and community in which it resides” (Rev. Clementa Pinckney). Break the cycle of repeating the same mistakes of the past and open our hearts to the revelation of God’s Word that “the church is freedom, freedom to worship, freedom to be fully what God intends us to be and have equality in the sight of God” (Rev. Clementa Pinckney).