A Prayer for Religious Liberty (and our state legislators and staff)

Prayer for Religious Liberty at the Kentucky State Capitol. Photo by Kentucky Today.

I was asked to pray for our Kentucky state legislators staff today at a prayer rally for Kentucky Baptist pastors at the Kentucky State Capitol today. I was honored and happy to do so. Below is the text of my prayer.

Our Father’s God to thee, Author of Liberty, to thee we pray,

We thank you for the gift of liberty and especially our religious liberty that reminds us that there is a power higher than government or any human power that grants us our liberties. As John F. Kennedy said in his inaugural address, “The rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.” All of our rights come from You, O God. Because there is a power higher than the state, we have the rights of free speech, freedom of association, freedom of assembly, freedom from unreasonable search and seizure, and freedom from cruel and unusual punishment. These are not gifts of government to us, but gifts of God which government must recognize. Because this is true, we have the freedom to gather here in prayer today. Because this is true, I have the freedom to minister to all who work in the two buildings behind me through a ministry of presence, prayer, and proclamation. Because this is true, others who think differently than me have the exact same right. And for all of this, we thank You!

Father, we pray now for those who work in the Capitol and the Capitol Annex, specifically the Kentucky State House, Senate, and their staff. They are here by your will and by your hand. You have ordained civil government to protect and preserve human rights. Thank you for these men and women who are willing to serve their Commonwealth and a cause that is greater than themselves. Thank you for the long hours of work that their constituents don’t see, but You see. Thank you for their sacrifice of being away from their families and careers in order to serve our Commonwealth. I pray that you would bless these men and women, that your hand would be upon them, that you would grant them great wisdom as they balance competing claims on our liberties, that they would legislate righteously and wisely for the good of the people. I pray for their families while they are away so much during session and during this interim. Please be with their spouses, children, and grandchildren. Protect them and allow them to know how much they are loved and cared for by You. Give strength and health to these men and women.

We pray also for the administrative staff who work behind the scenes with little or no glory, but who are the engine that runs our state government. We pray for their safety as some come to these grounds to assert their liberties in ways that threaten others.

We also pray for the Supreme Court which meets in this building and many times adjudicates on issues of religious liberty.

We also thank you for the Kentucky State Police and security details that work year around to keep everyone safe.

In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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