Dear God in heaven,
You hear in our words more exasperation than prayer. I apologize. We too often use your name as an exclamation point than as our Lord and Savior.
Truth be told, we cry out in fear. The world we live in, our age, this generation is in a long season of fear. There is a barbarism, a terrorism let loose among us that cuts to the quick of our dearest held values.
Holy God, we want to be like you. We want justice to roll down like water, and righteousness like an ever flowing stream. We do know what you require of us, to do justly, to love mercy, to walk humbly with you. We want to be the people who live your Beatitudes and your Golden Rule. We want to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. We even want to love our enemies, and forgive 70 times 7. But these times are pushing us against our human limits of tolerance and understanding.
We readily confess the shortcomings, failures, and sins of our own histories. But they do not excuse the evil that comes against us. We are afraid. For travelers and missionaries and humanitarian aid workers, for journalists and civilians and soldiers, we are afraid. For Christians and Yazidis and whoever is the other, we are afraid. For life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, we are afraid.
But God, here we are in prayer, in all humility, on our knees, literally or figuratively. Even in our fear we believe… We believe that perfect love drives out fear… We believe that faith, hope, and love abide, and the greatest of these is love… Your love is our hope and our faith… Your love is proven in our Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.