A Prayer for Syria (Written on August 23rd, 2013)

Lord, I come to you because so many swear to your existence and majesty, although I’m not a believer.  I can’t lie to you as I bow down and pray for Syria.  These lips have cursed your name for years.  It is not your fault I don’t believe.  I stopped believing because I know that humans were never created – especially created in the image of God.  They grew through years and years of evolution and biological tinkering.  They’re organisms which were once simple life forms evolved to ever complex beings.  People do good, oh lord, they do.  They are capable of great things.  However, there is nothing more insidious than the evil that fuels us to exercise power over other people.  Lord, many blame the Devil for this evil, but I tell you it exists in every person’s heart.  This saddens me to no end, my lord.

Lord, I would scream if my neighbors can bear the sound of blood curdling.  Lord, I would run through the streets and scream at everyone to do something, almost anything but what they’re doing.  Yes, I know, I too am lost in this world of routines and momentary pleasures.  I type these words in comfort while humans lay in heaps somewhere in Syria today.  They say over 100,000 have died since the Civil War began a few years ago.  Lord, will this ever end and be swept into the corners of our minds.  Syria is suffocating tonight from chemicals sprung out of a mad man’s lab.  This man is said to believe in God.  Lord, please tell me this is not true.  I always wanted to believe in good.  That being good is not being naive.  I believed that people wanted for you to exist even if they knew you were too good to be true.  Why do we care about a man who died thousands of years ago on some old cross while so many are dying today?  Lord, please tell me, why should I care about you?  Should I end this prayer in protest or should I believe?

Lord, I am back, bowing my head in supplication, asking for peace.  Lord, why would I come to you?  The answer is simple.  I want to believe in a greater good that exists beyond matter.  I want to believe all the horrors that exist in this world can be seen from above and dealt with finally.  All the murderous rage that acted as the groundwork for so many injustices, lord, I hope is dealt with in the spiritual world.  Lord, I understand that the law can’t keep up with the murderers that exist among us.  Lord, I just want to bring someone into this world without thinking that they will have to suffer through another war.  Lord, why can’t we just stop hurting each other?

 Lord, thank you for the time you have given me to write this and regroup.  Please let me explain to you what I see.  I will watch a few videos and tell you what I feel about the madness in Syria.  That is all I could do from my comfortable perch.  And then I will utter a simple prayer for Peace.  Lord, this is how I want to express to you my faith.  Simply, I have faith in liberation – that humans can shake off the hurt and pain to heal.  Here it is, my lord, the images that I see.  A devastated place where people go though the mundane aspects of war.  A man repeating in Arabic that “God is Great!”  A man taking cover and shooting his rifle from a hole in the wall.  Several tanks patrolling and cruising through the streets.  Why is struggle so human as the soldiers cling to their routines and tools?  Lord, I am a pacifist, but I believe in the struggle.  Why my lord?  Because otherwise we would be inert.  Lord, I don’t want to be violent but there it is, my lord, the banality of evil.

I pray, my good lord, for Syria this morning.  Lord, forgive the men, women and children who must give in to their basest emotions.  Some enjoy the freedom that wars bring.  Lord, please forgive all these people.  Their leader is just another power-hungry man in a world full of power hunger.  Lord, this hunger is like our collected heritage.  We are weaned on these stories – from school rooms to backyards; from executive boardrooms to the gang lands of Chicago.  Lord, there is no way to escape this lesson – to be someone is to be powerful, to be weak is to be no one.  Lord, this is all of the wisdom that I’ve collected through the years.  Lord, I would ask that what happens in Syria will never happen to the people here in the United States.  However, as I write this, my good lord, someone has been shot in Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Baton Rouge, and the list goes on in perpetuity.  Lord, how do we stop this violence.  Lord, we can’t just outlaw guns because being passive is subject to the lust for power of others.  Lord, I haven’t yet said my prayer for Syria, so I will concentrate, my lord.

Lord, please bring peace to Syria today.  Please, my lord, bring justice to the perpetrators of evil that have left many thousands dead.  Lord, I ask that a woman will get to know her husband, a child will be able to express their love to their parents in Syria today.  Lord, I ask that a little boy can write his first love letter to his love interest in Syria today.  Lord, I pray that a young lady can hold her lover’s hand in Syria today.  Lord, I pray that someone can play music and let it blare through the speakers.  Lord, they have been listening to prayers, and shouts, and commands, and detrimental decrees for much too long.  Let them hear the sound of silence, peace, and life all around them.  I pray for Syria tonight. 

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