Gun Violence Prevention Prayers

This is the start of my collected resource. Because I need to be real about this.

Also more than “Thoughts & Prayers”

All prayers can be used/adapted/shared with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

No Breath Prayer In the Pit: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/26/13962/

Call Me Mara, A Bitter Prayer: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/25/mara-a-bitter-prayer/

14 no 19 no 21, https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/24/14-a-prayer/

Truth: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/16/truth-a-prayer/

Imprecation: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/15/imprecation/

Do You Reject Evil? https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/15/do-you-reject-evil/

Forgiving God: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/03/19/forgiving-god-a-prayer/

Empty-handed Prayer: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/02/25/empty-handed-prayer/

I’m so mad: https://katyandtheword.com/2021/04/16/im-mad-and-thats-not-going-to-change-prayer/

Timeless God: https://katyandtheword.com/2022/05/28/god-of-time/

Mara: A Bitter Prayer

Call me Mara Today, God
Because I am bitter,
and the back of my throat aches
from too much crying,
as the grief hits me again, and again

And the place I call home
is a nation that likes to “protects” the unborn,
but locks up immigrants & Black and Brown kids, cannot feed thousands of children,
Corners the the market on formula and then doesn’t regulate it properly,
stops the payments for vulnerable families, destroys queer families,
and totally reopens the nation before any babies can receive vaccinations.

Call me Mara, God, Embittered
that people want “young families” don’t come to church
in a culture where parents, especially mothers, are expected to do every single thing on their own, and are judged for every imperfection.

Call me Mara, God,
For I am broken;
When there is a market for bulletproof backpacks,
when the news is about the latest, and which of the massive shootings–
where domestic violence and white supremacy is acceptable
to the degree that no warning signals are put out for terrorism
and armoring up, Lord God Almighty, Seems to be the only way us humans seem to be able to respond to any kind of violence.

Call me Mara, God.
Because despite voting, and letters, and marching and the sobs of countless families…

not

one

thing

has changed.

Call
us Mara
God.

Because, these too are our Children
And tomorrow, my throat will still be sore from crying
and I will still taste the bitterness of tears–that’s what home tastes like now.

I bet you want to be called Mara too, God.
Because they are your children too!

Selah! Mara, Selah!

Amen.

Feel free to use/adapt/share with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

14, A Prayer

14 18 20 21
God?!!???
When will the
USA
countdown
Enough
Wisps of childhood
Enough gasps of Black People
Enough cries of Brown People
Enough endangerment of Whot people
For thoughts to turn into flipped tables?
And prayers to turn into peace beyond understanding?
How Long Lord?
I’m tired of this prayer, prayed on behalf of those who no longer pray
Melt our hearts God, move us beyond what we are—to doing what we need to do to bring peace.
No more thoughts and prayers—policies ans protests. Times 14. 18 20 21
Screw it. Times 14,000 18,000 20,000 21,000
In the name of Jesus Christ. We pray.

Amen

Feel free to use/adapt/share with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Fiercely Listening, a prayer

God

sometimes I think about

how much of my job

is listening to those

who are hurt

Sometimes I pray about

all those without ears to hear

Those who are quick to judge

or center themselves

or say, if they had just…

So…

I think about how often Jesus just sat

and listened, really listened

and validated people’s pain,

and then called them by name.

Sometimes I think about

how much of the community’s job

is listening,

Fiercely listening to those

who are unheard, or drowned out our ignored

Fiercely listening

who are hurt,

without judgement

or agenda

…just listening fiercely

to those who have been

especially hurt

and then I

try to practice

that fierce listening

taking to heart

the cries of injustice

opening my ears to hear

and my heart to be melted

Help me me to do my job I pray.

Amen.

Feel free to share/adapt/use with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Teaching No More War, A Prayer

God,

Today I am thinking about how much

We humans have to devalue one another to go to war.

God, when I think of all of the lying that war involves.

Of all the hate and dehumanizing.

It chokes in my throat, and makes it hard for me to breathe.

Was this what it was like for the Hebrews,

walking in the desert,

homeless,

landless,

without water

immigrants.

Is this why you admonished them never to forget

that they were victims of war?

Is this why you promised them a land of milk and honey?

Does this symbolize a land where all people are valued as humans.

Does the promised land signify a place

where Terfs lies about trans individuals are muted

so we do not even hear their voices?

Is this a place where the bullying that

the right honorable judge,

and so many minorities had to stand by

and just take

Is not only unacceptable

but laughable.

If that is the Kingdom,

God–sign me up.

If that is peace,

I want to be there yesterday.

Teach us the ways of war no more, Lord.

Help us to pray for our enemies in such a way,

in such a way that we do NOT dehumanize one another.

Please teach us God.

we pray.

Amen.

Feel Free to Use/Adapt/Share with Credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Image: https://i.pinimg.com/originals/ea/31/cd/ea31cd3b48ced7e685e9a03d959cd68b.jpg

Peace Makers-A Prayer

Blessed are the peacemakers

The ones who craft safety and sanctuary,

so that parents can read to children in their own beds at home,

instead of hiding in bunkers.

Blessed are the peacemakers, who stand up to bullies

for they value lives over money–

Flipping tables along the way…

and life over the color of ones skin or religion

knowing that God does not say “only let the white Christian people in”

But instead says “It is your job, always, without fail, to care for refugees, for you were once a refugee people.”

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they do not hide from conflict

but face it, head on, and name the injustices, in voices clear and strong.

God bless the makers of peace–who reach into their pockets

and pull together whatever bits and pieces they have on them,

and commit to make peace with whatever they have on them at the moment.

They are never silent in oppression,

They ask the right questions like “What happened here?” and “Let the one without sin throw the first stone?”

they never worry about inconveniences or being uncomfortable,

but choose to act out of the giving of their very selves–to make peace.

God bless the peace makers,

The rainbow promise keepers, the food-givers, the stranger welcomers, the least of these carers. God bless them, for theirs is the Kingdom.

And while you’re at it, God, help us to pay attention, so we too may be makers of peace we pray.

Amen.

Feel free to use/share/adapt with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

Empty Handed Prayer

Ok God,

You know that sometimes,

Ok let’s be honest,

All too often,

My hands are outstretched!

Not because I’m throwing my hands up in praise

but rather

because they feel WAY too empty.

And I can’t find a way to help–

So I pray.

So here I am Sweet Jesus,

In the middle of a veritable plague,

on the edge of what could be World War 3,

while dictators invade innocent nations,

while families are treatened to be ripped apart

for supporting and loving and affirming

your God imaged trans and lesbian and gay and nonbinary children

and black and brown people are still killed without warrant or warrants

and books are being banned and burned

and gun violence is up everywhere

and home prices are through the roof–

Is this how it felt Jesus, when you were born

in the middle of occupied Jerusalem

Is this how the disciples felt

when they asked you the same questions

over and over (and over) again.

Did you have compassion for them,

because you knew their questions were a form of prayer?

God why is this happening?

How do we stop it?

Why do we fall into these patterns of evil again and again.

Hosanna! Save us! Help us!

God, as we enter this lonely time time of Lent,

Help me to walk with you, I pray.

because, God knows,

You know,

I at least don’t want to walk it alone.

And so here I am,

with an empty handed prayer,

knowing that I’m asking for something to do

and what you ask will not be easy…

but I choose to pray anyway,

Because I don’t want to be empty handed anymore!

Lord hear my prayer,

Amen.

Amen.

Feel free to share/adapt/use with credit to Pastor Katy Stenta

With thanks to @Thomaslhorrocks for the inspirational tweet