Today’s Prayer

You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus, and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him. An athlete is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. 2 Timothy 2: 1-5

A Soldier’s Prayer

I am here Lord
far from home
called by grace
by duty
standing with my brothers
against an enemy I do not know
who does not know me

I don’t always understand the reasons for being here
for the madness that surrounds me
the terror, the loss, the twisted nature of what war is

I have witnessed horrors no one should see,
done things that are unholy, but necessary
I have watched terrified children
become hardened soldiers

yet I believe in what I am doing
without someone to defend them
these people would perish
at the hands of zealots

men who believe that they are god
or speak for god
punish as they believe god would punish
with cruelty and violence
without mercy or equity
without regard for truth

it is our task as soldiers to protect these innocents
to give them a choice
other than death or insanity
to help to make them whole
to keep them safe

it is a soldier’s misfortune
to share in their suffering

they have lost family
we have lost brothers
all have lost their innocence

oh, Lord,
grant me empathy
for those who suffer
and compassion
for the victims of war

please give me the wisdom
to recognize my enemy
and to act justly toward him
to quell the anger in me for my loss
help me to remember
that the rules of war
are the path to lasting peace

finally,
grant me the forgiveness
that brings a peaceful heart
a quiet mind
and a soul
filled with your grace

Amen