If ever we needed reminding of the extreme danger and difficulty of police work, we had it in agonizing clarity in New York on Saturday night.
Two brave public servants are dead, assassinated by an evil coward.
Two families are in deep mourning, two extended families devastated for the rest of their lives.
Tens of thousands of police officers and their families live in a new dimension of fear, trembling with anxiety each time they kiss goodbye and start their shifts.
Our society is plunged into even greater division and enmity, the future looking bleaker, not brighter, by the day.
If ever there was a time for fervent prayer, it’s now – individually and corporately. What to pray? All I can offer are the instinctive reflexes of my own heart:
- For comfort, strength, and hope for the weeping families.
- For protection, courage, and peace for our police officers as they go about their jobs.
- For calm daily (and nightly) trust for all police officers’ families.
- For divine restraint on evil people.
- For the end of violent protests and murderous rhetoric from the protesters and their leaders.
- For wisdom for our leaders to know how to repair divisions and re-build confidence in the judicial process.
- For new and godly leadership on every side to replace the old, divisive spokesmen with a vested interest in maintaining hate and division.
- For the media to avoid exaggerated, partisan, sensationalism that provokes anger, bitterness, and vengeance.
- For the Gospel to bring peace between God and people, and between different peoples.
- For the church to become the model for a new society – integrated, loving, and holy.
- For building of personal friendships between presently divided people.
On that last point, we could all make a difference by going out of our way in our everyday life to be friendly, kind, and generous when dealing with people who are different to us.
And how about every single one of us reaching out to build friendly relationships with law enforcement officers and even just one person of different color to ourselves. Over time that would do more to re-unite the divided states of America than any amount of legislation.