August 13, 2020 | Prayer by Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner, NCNW National Chaplain and President of Skinner Leadership Institute
Loving and Merciful God, you created a model for transformational leadership through the earthly life of Jesus, rooted in care for the despised, the lowly, and the forgotten. In our nation, with power in the hands of self-seeking, self-promoting, and self-indulging leaders, we pray today, O God, for you to show yourself strong on behalf of the voiceless, the widows, the fatherless, and immigrants of color, blocked at our shores. We pray against indifference by those in power to children in zip codes targeted for neglect, to the elderly forgotten in nursing homes, and to prisoners of color left mercilessly in COVID-19 “hot spots" while white prisoners with connections in high places go free.
King Solomon’s wisdom in Proverbs 21:13 reminds us that “Those who shut their ears to the cries of the poor will be ignored in their own time of need.” Proverbs 29:2 instructs us that “When the godly are in authority, the people rejoice, but when the wicked are in power, they groan.” For years, loving God, we have witnessed with sadness and disgust, the high cost of unethical leaders, trampling daily on core values that make our nation strong---kindness, mercy, justice in courts, care for the vulnerable, and respect for the law.
O Lord hear our plea to raise up compassionate leaders rooted in righteousness, who identify with the oppressed, and those victimized by structural racism. Listen to our cry for leaders of godly character and high emotional intelligence who are committed to lifting those at the bottom to the standard of decency and dignity worthy of a just nation. Almighty God, you are the supplier of every need, the healer of every hurt, and restorer of lives too long devalued. We declare and decree that leaders will come forth whom you instruct, who calibrate their moral compass to your holy word over politics and personal gain, and for men and women in authority who seek after your own heart. We pray this prayer in your matchless, mighty, and magnificent, name Lord God. Amen.