Facing The Fear

Facing The Fear of Violence and War

By 24/7 Prayer

God of Peace, I offer You my worries, I bring You my brokenness, and I surrender my striving. As I rest in Your presence, I receive Your peace.

I pause and pray… 

Today, I am reflecting on a psalm which speaks of the terrible impact of war in the ancient world. 

(Read: Psalm 79:1-7) 

Brutal wars are nothing new. When the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem, as the final verse of this text says, they both massacred the population and razed the city to the dust. The psalmist responds with an angry, honest prayer, which is full of questions. He is wrestling with God in the face of devastating grief, trauma, and injustice. 

God, sometimes I am afraid, and sometimes I don’t understand why You seem to allow people to act the way they do with such cruel violence. Help me not to turn away from the suffering of those who are my neighbors. Show me how to pray well. May Your kingdom come, and Your will be done.

I pause and pray… 

Lord, I pray for children, women, and men who are suffering today because of wars around the world. I pray for Ukraine, but also for those caught up in the now less-remembered wars – in Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Yemen, and Mexico’s drug war – in which more than 350,000 people have lost their lives.

I pause and pray… 

Lament and the expression of grief is not something people in the western world tend to be very good at. As Christians, we have learned to smile through tragedy and to always look as if we are rejoicing, come what may. And so, trauma weighs heavy on our hearts. Not so the psalmist; he is honest about how he feels. 

I pause and pray… 

Lord, the world feels like a mess right now, and I’m not always sure where You are. But, if I find it hard to nestle in Your arms, may I at least engage with You enough to keep wrestling. Amen.

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