A Prayer for Ukraine
This is my prayer, after reading Psalm 10 this week. If you listen carefully you can hear the Psalm
For a month we have stared at the pictures from Ukraine.
Strollers abandoned make us think the worse.
Wives with their hands pressed up against a train window make us cry.
A hospital in ruins. A trail of blood. A mass grave.
1 Why, Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?
There is a mad man, someone who wants to burn the world to ash.
That child is dead because of one man.
That soldier will never see his family again because of one man.
2 In his arrogance the wicked man hunts down the weak, who are caught in the schemes he devises. 3 He boasts about the cravings of his heart; he blesses the greedy and reviles the Lord. . . 6 He says to himself, “Nothing will ever shake me.” He swears, “No one will ever do me harm.”
7 His mouth is full of lies and threats; trouble and evil are under his tongue. . . he murders the innocent. . . 10 His victims are crushed, they collapse; they fall under his strength. 11 He says to himself, “God will never notice; he covers his face and never sees.”
The belief in God is a deterrent oh Lord, and when we see people
Without brakes, the easiest conclusion is they think Heaven is silent.
That you are oblivious to suffering.
God we see the suffering. We send money. Nations send missiles, food, medical supplies, guns, armored vehicles. We are not sitting on our hands in this world. Offering support without escalating is a difficult balance for us to find.
Eternal God of Ukraine---you know they are doing their best, more than their best. Courage and stubbornness had a baby and it was named Ukrainian. But Lord they need you, we need you. Not to reign from on high but to find a way to the sleepless soldier, the orphaned child, the immigrant seeking refuge, the leaders trying to forge an ending, and the believer doubting their God.
12 Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God. Do not forget the helpless. . . 14 But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless. 15 Break the arm of the wicked man; call the evildoer to account for his wickedness . . .
16 The Lord is King for eternity; the nations (are temporary) will perish from his land. 17 You, Eternal God, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, 18 defending the fatherless and the oppressed, so that mere temporary earthly mortals will never again strike terror.
One day we will beat swords into plowshares, but until then let the King of Eternity use spirit, hands, and feet, to speak and move, and turn pride into failure and courage into victory. In the name of the Eternal God who will reign long after the kingdoms of this earth fall we pray, AMEN.