Father, in Jesus name, I must admit that I am so discouraged when I think about the state of the Church. We are called to be salt and light in the world and honestly we do not speak, act, or live much differently than our neighbors who do not know Christ. We are often judgemental of others, silent when we should speak up, and not believing Your Word.
The way that we often value and identify ourselves and one another has little or nothing to do with the truth that we are created in the image of God and are new creatures in Christ. But more to do with our cultural values, ethnic groups, race, socio-economic status, educational attainment, and political preferences. We take our cues from the ways of the world and the cultural norms of our society instead of living as citizens of heaven awaiting a Savior from there the Lord Jesus Christ.
God, we are often too driven by issues (i.e. abortion, racism) failing to see that Jesus is the issue. That is why some of us cry out against the slaughter of preborn black babies in the womb and yet fail to speak against unjust acts done to young black men. And others of us speak against unjust acts against young black men and fail to say anything against the slaughter of preborn black babies. Jesus, help us to truly make You the issue for when we do we'll have Your heart and see all human life, from the womb to the tomb, with the same dignity and value and speak up for injustices done to any.
God forgive us for so often being silent and accepting of evils in this world such as abortion, racism, sexual immorality, the perversion of marriage and family, the worship of government and its leaders above and instead of You. God, I am not pointing my finger at my brothers and sisters for I know that far too often I have failed to walk worthy of the gospel and in the process misrepresented You. It should not be all that surprising why the church has lost her influence in our nation and is often deemed irrelevant and mocked by those in the world. To the world, all we have is another philosophy, in the marketplace of ideas, that is mere rhetoric devoid of any real power to transform lives, marriages, families, communities, and nations.
We have so many preachers and teachers of God's Word here in America. Yet it seems that the darkness is drowning out the light. In my cynicism and doubt, I confess that I do not want to preach Your Word again (yet I know that it is not about my will but Yours). I am tired of just being one with a 'beautiful voice' that tickles peoples ears and has no real impact/influence on peoples lives. Too many days do I fail to live this new life in Christ in my home before my wife and kids. By Your Spirit lead me to truly repent and confess my sins as You revive my soul and empower me to live an authentic life. I pray the same for every member of the body of Christ.
God, I thank You that, regardless of what I see and think, the good work that You have begun in Your people You will bring to completion on the day of Christ Jesus. So I ask You to pour out Your Presence and Spirit in our hearts and use us to glorify Your name as You have entrusted us with the gospel of the Kingdom that is not in word only but in power. In Jesus' name. Amen!