God, our Father in Heaven,
I pray for our world. I pray for my country. I pray that all of us will pay attention and engage with those who are different from us for whatever reason. I pray that we will seek to understand why they feel, believe, and vote the way they do, rather than ignore them or belittle them as wrong for whatever reason in whatever way.
I pray for all of those who feel oppressed, marginalized, ignored, and patronized. I pray that we will understand why they feel this way, that we will understand their lives and their history and their reactions that may differ from ours. I pray that we might see each other as fellow human beings, not antagonists.
Forgive us, Lord. Forgive our sins as a people. Heal our broken nation. I pray that we may remember our Constitution and the ideals of freedom and liberty that led to the founding of this nation. I pray that we may heal from the sins of our history and move forward.
I pray that you will be at work in the hearts and minds of those who are angry, and those who feel hate toward others who are different. I pray that they will be softened and broken, and that they will see the people that they hate as human beings, as beloved children of God. I pray that bridges will be built.
I pray for my good friends who live in and around Charlottesville. I pray that you will keep them safe as protesters and the news media descend on their region. I pray that they will be good examples to the world at large, so that the rest of the country will know that central Virginia is a beautiful place full of friendly people who are not white supremacists.
And I pray for my own heart. God, I pray that you will expose the biases I have, and help me practice what I preach and heal the anger I sometimes feel toward certain groups.
In the name of Jesus, who died to forgive our sins, and bring us to everlasting life with him,