Sunday, August 20, 2017

A Call to Worship for Churches Praying for Peace and Racial Reconciliation in Charlottesville, Virginia


To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world. + Karl Barth


For those still seeking to understand what happened in Charlottesville on August 12, 2017, and why this continues to happen in the U.S. time and time again, there is much to grieve, more people to listen to, and many to come alongside.  

But for now, Pastor Rich Villodas has provided a wonderful prayer and cry for us below to complement Emmaus City's denomination's Statement on Charlottesville, Virginia

Also, after the prayer and statement link, I include songs, hymns, and a litany that I think are worth singing in response to our country's deep rooted sins and confusion in relation to racism and how we still need to deeply learn how to embody the gospel of reconciliation that Jesus has given us.

LORD, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. We need to be given the miracle of sight and be healed.

| 1 | A Congregational Prayer for Churches after Charlottesville by Pastor Rich Villodas


One: Lord Jesus, Your Kingdom is Good News for a world caught in racial hostility. We ask that You would give us grace for the deep challenges facing our country.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord Jesus, we confess our anger, our deep sadness, and our collective sense of weakness to see this world healed through our own strength.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord Jesus, we honestly confess that our country has a long history of racial oppression, that racism has been a strategy of evil powers and principalities.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord Jesus, we confess that the Gospel is Good News for the oppressed and the oppressor. Both are raised up. Both are liberated, but in different ways. The oppressed are raised up from the harsh burden of inferiority. The oppressor from the destructive illusion of superiority.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord Jesus, we confess that the Gospel is Your power to form a new people not identified by dominance and superiority, but by unity in the Spirit.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord Jesus, we ask that You would help us name our part in this country’s story of racial oppression and hostility. Whether we have sinned against others by seeing them as inferior, or whether we have been silent in the face of evil. Forgive us of our sin.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord Jesus, we pray for our enemies. For those who have allowed Satanic powers to work through them. Grant them deliverance through Your mighty power.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord, we ask that you would form us to be us peacemakers. May we be people who speak the truth in love as we work for a reconciled world.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.
One: Lord we commit our lives to You, believing that You are working in the world in spite of destructive powers and principalities. Bring healing to those who are hurt, peace to those who are anxious, and love to those who are fearful. We wait for You, O Lord. Make haste to help us.
All: Oh Lord, only You can make all things new.

| 2 | Hymns and Songs for Racial Reconciliation and Healing

Let Justice Roll
By Sojourn Worship

2015 A.D.
Forgive us Lord, for passing by
When children cry for bread.
Forbid it Lord, that justice lies
In tatters, cold and dead.
Outside these walls run desperate streets 
Where greed is law and life is cheap.
We bar the doors, refuse to see, 
Or hear the words You said:

Let justice roll like a river, 

Like a river, let it roll!
Let justice roll like a river,
Like a river, 
let it roll!

Convict us Lord, we dance and laugh 
Ignoring those who weep.
Correct us Lord, our golden calf
Has lulled our hearts to sleep.
The gap between the rich and poor
Grows ever wider, shore to shore.
There’s racial hate, religious war
And wolves among the sheep.
(Chorus)

Indwell us Lord, and purify 
Our hands to work for You.
Enlist us Lord, to serve nearby
And ʻcross the waters, too.
Your image-bearers on the earth
Will never know how much theyʼre worth
Unless we love and help them first
And show the way to You!
(Chorus)

By All Sons and Daughters
2011 A.D.

All the poor and powerless,
And all the lost and lonely.
All the thieves will come confess,
And know that You are holy.
And know that You are holy.

And all will sing out
"Hallelujah!"
And we will cry out, "Hallelujah!"

All the hearts who are content,
And all who feel unworthy.
And all who hurt with nothing left
Will know that You are holy.
(Chorus)

Shout it,
Go on scream it from the mountains,
Go on and tell it to the masses,
That He is God!
(Chorus)

By All Sons and Daughters
2011 A.D.

Will Your grace run out
If I let you down?
'Cause all I know
Is how to run.

'Cause I am a sinner,
If it's not one thing it's another;
Caught up in words,
Tangled in lies.
But You are a Savior
And You take brokenness aside
And make it beautiful,
Beautiful!

Will You call me child
When I tell You lies?
'Cause all I know
Is how to cry.
(Chorus)

By William Cowper
1779 A.D.

Heal us, Emmanuel, here we are. 
We long to feel Thy touch.
Deep wounded souls to Thee we fly.
O Savior hear our cry!

Our faith is feeble, we confess.
We faintly trust Thy word.
But will You pity us the less?
Be that far from You, LORD!
(Chorus)

Remember him who once applied
With trembling for relief.
“Lord, I believe,” with tears he cried
“O help my unbelief!" 
(Chorus)

She, too, who touched You in the press
And healing virtue stole
Was answered, “Daughter, go in peace
Thy faith has made thee whole.”
(Chorus)

Like her, with hopes and fears we come
To touch You if we may.
O send us not despairing home,
Send none unhealed away.
(Chorus)

By Indelible Grace
2007 A.D.

When we come O Christ to Thee,
When we bow adoring knee,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
By Thy victory and strife,
By the merits of Your life,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
Oh, by all the pains and woe,
Suffered once for man below,
Listen to our cry! Hear our sacred litany!

By Thy helpless infant years,
By Thy life of want and tears,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
By Thy days of sore distress,
In the savage wilderness,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
By the dread mysterious hour,
Of the insulting tempter's power,
Listen to our cry! Hear our sacred litany!

By the sacred griefs that wept,
O'er the grave where Lazarus slept,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
By the boding tears which flowed
Over Salem's loved abode.
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
By Thy hour of dire despair,
By Thy agony of prayer,
Listen to our cry! Hear our sacred litany!

By the gloom that veiled the skies
Over dreadful sacrifice,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
By the vault whose dark abode,
Held in vain the rising God,
Hear our prayer, hear our cry!
O from earth to heaven restored,
Mighty re-ascended LORD!
Listen to our cry, hear our sacred litany!


By Tasha Cobbs & Will Reagan
2013 & 2015 A.D.

There is power in the name of Jesus;
There is power in the name of Jesus;
There is power in the name of Jesus
To break every chain, break every chain,
Break every chain!

All sufficient sacrifice so freely given,
Such a price bought our redemption,
Heaven's gates swing wide.

There's an army rising up, there's an army rising up!
There's an army rising up to break every chain,
Break every chain, break every chain!

I hear the chains falling!

To break every chain, break every chain,
Break every chain!

You provide the fire, I'll provide the sacrifice.
You provide the Spirit, I will open inside.

Fill me up, God, fill me up, God,
Fill me up, God, fill me up.

Love of God, overflow.
Would You permeate all my soul?

Fill me up until I overflow!
I want to run over, I want to run over!

Wake Up
By All Sons and Daughters
2011 A.D.

We have seen the pain
That shaped our hearts,
And in our shame 
We're still breathing.

'Cause we have seen 
The hope of Your healing,
Rising from our souls 
Is the feeling.
We are drawing close,
Your light is shining through.

Wake up, wake up, wake up 
All you sleepers.
Stand up, stand up, stand up,
All you dreamers.
Hands up, hands up, hands up, 
All believers.
Take up your cross,
Carry it on.

All that You reveal with light
In us will come to life 
And start breathing.
(Chorus)

Here we stand,
Our hearts are Yours.
Not our will, 
But Yours be done
For more thoughtful reflections on racism, mercy, and justice, also see: Reconciling Good News: Moving with God in Welcoming Justice and Building Beloved Community




+ Sully

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