“A Prayer for the Presidential Election”

A Prayer for the Presidential Election

Back in 2008, when Barak Obama and John McCain were the major party candidates for president, there was a great deal of anxiety around the election.  Most of us had come to realize just how severe the economic crisis was both in our nation and the world, and we were concerned about leadership. 

Therefore my husband and I planned a community service of worship the night before the election to pray for the nation and the days ahead. We prayed for those affected by the financial crisis, for those who would be affected and for the wisdom of those who would be leading us through it. 

Now eight years later, once again we find anxiety around the presidential election.  With the recent flooding, there has been little time to plan a service for Monday night.  So instead I offer you by print two things: 

First, the promise that when we wake up Wednesday, November 9, and the concession and the victory speeches have been made, regardless of who has been declared the winner, God will still be in charge.  God will still be sovereign, and God will still manage the affairs of the world. As Max Lucado points out, “Never before has God’s providence depended on a king, a president, or any ruler. And it will not on November 9, 2016.”

Second, a prayer to use for devotion and meditation between now and those speeches.  “A Prayer for the Presidential Election” was written by Bishop Kenneth Carter of the United Methodist Church and is printed with his permission: 

“Creator of us all: you are the source of every blessing, the judge of every nation and the hope of earth and heaven:

We pray to you on the eve of this important and historic election.

We call to mind the best that is within us: That we live under God, that we are indivisible,
that liberty and justice extend to all.

We acknowledge the sin that runs through our history as a nation: The displacement of native peoples, racial injustice, economic inequity, regional separation.

And we profess a deep and abiding gratitude for the goodness of ordinary people who have made sacrifices, who have sought opportunities, who have journeyed to this land as immigrants and strengthened its promise in successive generations, who have found freedom on these shores, and defended this freedom at tremendous cost.

Be with us in the days that are near. Remind us that your ways are not our ways, that your power and might transcend the plans of every nation, that you are not mocked.

Let those who follow your Son Jesus Christ be a peaceable people in the midst of division.

Send your Spirit of peace, justice and freedom upon us, break down the walls of political partisanship, and make us one.

Give us wisdom to walk in your ways, courage to speak in your name, and humility to trust in your providence. Amen.”

May God help us to be good citizens, to respect differing views and to work through division.