This is not a war between people of color and cops. We do not have to choose sides of one or the other. This is a war against racism.
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
In Ephesians 6: 10 – 20, Paul teaches the believers in Ephesus about the spiritual battle faced by those who follow Christ. He uses their knowledge of Roman soldiers to teach them how to prepare for any spiritual battles ahead. He calls them to put on:
Belt – Truth
Breastplate – Righteousness
Shoes – readiness of the Gospel
Shield – Faith
Helmet – Salvation
Sword of the Spirit – The Word of God
In times of battle, we war against the enemy — not people, who are image bearers of God, but against sin. In our present darkness, we fight for justice and an end to the sin of racism. A sin that has been generationally passed down through words, actions, and systems. A sin that is so deeply rooted into the culture that it often remains unnoticed. Our enemies are not people, but the sin of racism. To fight against this darkness, we have to pick up the Word of God and know what He says is True. It is in seeking His truth that we are exposed to our own sin in the area of racism. We need to be ready to share the good news of Jesus in the midst of the darkness. We have to have faith in who He says He is and what He promises to do, so that we can quench the fires of testing and uncertainty. And we must pray.
Important first steps are to learn and to speak up– but we have to plead for racism to be defeated. We must take this sin before our sovereign God and ask Him to transform it. To redeem the hurt and trauma. To bring peace to fears. To end it, and restore our land.
Will you join me?
May we be people who seek Your Kingdom –united and free.
A Prayer over Brothers and Sisters of Color
God, you are a place of safety for Your people — especially those who feel neglected, mistreated, abused, and oppressed. But, Abba, You have not forgotten them. You have not abandoned them to this current reality. You are the God who sees. You keep count of all tears. You sit enthroned over it all. You hear cries, and You will act. You give courage and strength to push forward. You give a holy, complete justice that we are incapable of providing.
Today, we pray for You to comfort our brothers and sisters of color. We ask for peace that is beyond what is natural in the days ahead. Guard minds from hurtful words and actions. May we encourage and love others well — practicing the ministry of presence and listening. Give us wisdom to know when to speak up and use our privilege to fight. Even though we are learning and being exposed to our own sins and wrong thinking, NEVER let this become more about us. Give us eyes to see the beauty and inspiration to be found within Your imparted Image.
A Prayer over Cops
Abba, you delight in your children who seek justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with You. God, you love inviting us in to protect and shepherd your flock alongside You. I thank You for providing police officers with this duty. They have been set apart and entrusted to care for individuals and families– to sit with people in their darkest times and show love and patience. They lay down their time, safety, and families to serve and protect. Abba, You hem them in. You go out before them and behind them, leading them in Your ways and shielding them.
Not all who You lead choose to follow, though. Abba, give those who follow You the boldness to speak out against sin. Let them defend and protect those whom You have entrusted to them. Protect them and keep them so that they can continue working in You. May those who do not follow, be transformed and changed — as they behold Your image in each person they encounter. Close doors where they could bring harm, or worse death. Please provide skilled mentors to teach and train. Ultimately, give them a new heart — with compassion and drive to change the system into which they’ve been privileged with. May they become leaders and changers, like the apostle Paul — who rather than seeking to kill and destroy would transform to humbly love, serve, and point to You.
A Prayer over America
Abba, heal our land. Let us turn to You in humility. Give us discernment to see the ways we contribute to racism and the boldness to change it. May we do the hard work of accepting, lamenting, and rising up from our past failures and hurts. Let our lives be marked by our love for one another — pointing to Your all encompassing, graceful love. Let us be a people devoted to reflecting You fully. Give us an unshakeable conviction that our gospel is incomplete without the full body of Christ. Let our strengths be used to grow and care for one another, and let our weaknesses bring us in unison before Your throne. You alone are good. You alone are wise. You alone bring perfect justice.