Liminal Wonderings… by Jim England

Ten more dead at a high school shooting. More abuse of prayer by politicians. Allow me to suggest a prayer.

O Lord, I ask forgiveness for placing greater value on full campaign coffers and doing nothing about coffins full of children. Forgive me for selling my soul. I confess an idolatrous love of power and my lack of vision for protecting the vulnerable with that power. I am supposed to be a voice of the people. I confess my cowardice as I have become only a voice for moneyed interests.

I confess my lack of imagination. I do not allow myself to feel the fear of children when bullets ricochet around their desks. I confess my lack of empathy for trauma endured by the innocent and the emotional scarring of a lifetime. I have my protection detail and full health insurance that insulates me.

Lord, what would you have me  do to make schools safer? Forgive me for blaming everything from Ritalin to video games and for not looking in the mirror. Help me understand that blaming something else does not excuse me from my own duty.

Lord, the truth is I already know what to do. I confess the lack of courage to do it. I need compassion for the mentally ill and the wisdom to keep weapons out of their hands. I need the courage to listen to the silence of the dead, the grief of their parents and the outrage of the vulnerable.

Teach me, O God, to grow a conscience and a moral compass. Help me see how hollow my prayers are when I do nothing. Amen.