I led my primarily-white congregation in this prayer this Pentecost Sunday. May we all have the courage to pray for both comfort and discomfort.
Jesus spoke of you as a comforter, a helper. And so today we pray for your comfort.
Comfort the mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, friends and acquaintances of those who have died and are dying from this destructive pandemic.
Comfort the exhausted parents, health care workers, pastors, therapists, teachers, social workers, food workers, and all those whose work supports our communities.
Comfort those who lie in bed each night with worry for tomorrow. For the mentally ill, depressed, and lonely. For the unemployed. For the small business owner barely hanging on. For those who sleep outside without the safety of shelter, and for those who are one paycheck away from losing everything.
Comfort those who mourn the deaths of our black brothers and sisters at the hands of those tasked with protection.
But Holy Spirit, we know too that when you arrived on Pentecost you arrived in wind and fire. And so we also ask that you burn away that which is destructive and with your mighty power move us towards a just world.
Disturb our systems of oppression and the parts we play in them. Disturb our comfortable lives.
Disturb us so that we cannot look away. Disturb us so that we might see more clearly.
Disturb us at easy answers, at hurtful jokes, at micro-aggressions. May we be humble to receive correction. May we be bold to challenge wrong perspectives.
Disturb us to action so that we might work together for the full humanity of all your children.
Holy Spirit, stay near. Call us to a way of new life.
Through the gift of Christ our Lord.