Today we got the results from the US election. I know many people who are celebrating, and some who are angry or in disbelief (quite literally). I’ve been struck with the polarization of politics in these past few years – not just in the US, but also in Canada. Our digitally connected social media world has lead to some really interesting ways of figuring out the best ways to care for our neighbours and discovering truth. I’ve been wanting to jump back into writing for a while now, and I could have dove into what I think is right or wrong with the world today and what we should be doing to fix it, but instead I sat down tonight to write a prayer.

If you’re a follower of Jesus like me, tomorrow (or sometime in the next seven days from whenever you’re reading this) we’ll be joining a local church for worship – to declare that Jesus is Lord and King, to remind ourselves of His promises and goodness, and to continue to allow Him to form our lives through the power of the Spirit. We should come to church fully present with our joy, grief, excitement, disappointment, or whatever else you may be feeling coming out of today’s news or whatever else has happened in your life. This prayer is written with this recent election and news in mind, but also for every time we as followers of Jesus think about those who govern and lead us. May it bless you and points you to our King – Jesus.

King Jesus, You are the one who rules over all.

Our world is under Your dominion, and in it our governments and leaders. These human systems are imperfect and cracked by the sinful selfishness of which we are all guilty. You have placed in each of us a desire for justice, to see the world made right, but so often in our attempt to be just, we make a mess of things. You are the one who brings justice, and with it the mercy that we all need. Be gracious to us, and teach us to submit to You above all.

We are judgemental people. The work of loving our neighbours can be exhausting, and you call us also to love those that we so quickly call our enemy. Give us strength, Lord! We easily find what is wrong in those who see things differently than us while ignoring what is wrong in ourselves. You loved us by submitting to will of your enemy who cursed, mocked, and even killed you. Forgive us for being quick to label our neighbour as our enemy, and teach us to submit to You and love even those who want to harm us.

We are proud people. We embrace perspectives and ideas because they give us power and influence. Our desire to hold onto power poisons us against those who disagree and leads us to cursing and mocking our neighbour. We are polarized, and You call us to humble ourselves. Forgive us for our pride, and teach us to be self-emptying with our love, as You have modeled for us on the cross. 

We are shallow people. We put our hope and desires in the plans of men and women instead of You and Your Kingdom. Our hearts quickly go to idols that we can control that are eventually revealed to be hollow, leaving us with shattered hope. Forgive us for our impatience and idolatry, and teach us to long for the day of your return, when all of us will have our wrong hopes revealed for what they are when will bow and declare you King.

King Jesus, You are the one who rules over all.

Be gracious to us, and help us be gracious to those who lead us. Loosen our grip on anything that we haven’t fully submitted to You, that we may see You for who You are and enjoy the life that You have promised. 

Amen.