The Prayers of the People -- the Electorate

Many churches pray for the decision-makers, those in authority. “Grant them wisdom and strength to know and to do your will. To Senators and Representatives, and those who make our laws in States, Cities, and Towns, give courage, wisdom, and foresight to provide for the needs of all our people, and to fulfill our obligations in the community of nations.” Perhaps our prayers should include the electorate- we who elect the decision-makers. Do we forget that we are the ones charged with putting the decision makers in office?  Some of us vote and the candidate we support wins.  Some of us vote and the candidate we believe in looses.  Most of us, 80%, do not vote in mid-term elections.  

When we abdicate our responsibility to be God’s partner—God’s hands and feet on earth as St Teresa d’Avila said--- by electing our leaders, I wonder what God thinks about our weekly prayers for “our decision-makers.”  Is it possible God may be trying to tell us, “Hey!  You are decision-makers too! Next time, do your part. Make your prayer an action and VOTE!”  

For the next four weeks in worship, let’s pray for ourselves and the citizens of our state. 

God of all, grant us time and wisdom to discern who we will vote for in the light of the needs and assets of our community and the special gifts and capacities each office requires.  May we invite those we disagree with us to share their perspective with us.  Make us faithful stewards of the freedoms we’ve been given through early voting, Sunday voting, or on election day, that we may be a nation of the people, by the people, and for the people.  Grant us all a spirit of hope, inquiry and wisdom as we prepare to vote. And help us remember that our children are watching.  Amen.  

We know octogenarians who can recall most every midterm election of the last 50 years, college students who aren’t sure what county they live in, and homeless citizens who keep their voter registration card in their wallet at all times.  We need to be praying for all these eligible voters- that they take time to learn, make a plan to get to get to the polls and VOTE.  Then those prayers for “decision makers and all those in authority” really will be the Prayers of the People.

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