Is our memory as long as the last media clip on the internet? Is our attention drawn to the urgent—always? Nearly 50 years ago a book was published with the title Tyranny of the Urgent. The problem? The urgent often clouds our ability to see the important. Has that changed in the last 50 years? Not really. What about headlines that capture us today, but are forgotten within hours or days?
I have written about abuse in its various forms. How devastating it can be within families, communities, churches. The affects of abuse are much longer lasting than we want to admit. Therefore, when we know someone who is coming out of an abusive situation, what kind of timeline do we set for “getting back to normal”? Unless we are intimately involved in the care, we might be tempted to set a timeline for them. Rather, as Christians let’s refrain from that and take a different approach.
It has been eight days and yet how many have already forgotten?
Amanda Berry and Jocelyn Berry
What kind of news coverage is happening now? Thankfully, they have asked that the media step away from them and their families. Good for them! They need time, space, safety, love, and help. They have at least 10 years of days they want to forget. But let’s not forget these women.
We don’t need to rush to Cleveland to listen to them. We can speak to God who listens to each of our prayers. These people need continued prayers and support.
We take time now, to remember each of them, and their new lives. They have much to learn and unlearn. There may be times of painful memories, flashbacks, nightmares, and sadness, and perhaps depression. Most importantly we ask God to bring them peace, safety, and wholeness in Jesus Christ.
Lord God, we as a nation were shocked by the details of the kidnapping, rape, and abuse that these women endured. Sin is horrible in any manifestation, any kind of outer dress that it is enclosed in. We lift up to Your throne of grace Gina, Michelle, Amanda, and Jocelyn. As deep as their physical, emotional, and spiritual wounds are, You are the God who understands, who cares, who loves especially in the worst of times. According to Your great mercy, work all that is necessary in their lives. Surround them with people of love and patience. Grant them nights of rest, free from fear, uncertainty, and confusion. Sustain them each step of the way as You grant healing of body, mind, and soul; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever. Amen
And for others…
Perhaps you know someone in an abusive relationship. You can adjust this prayer, or say it in your own words. Regardless, prayers for those who are or have been abused are an important part of our plea as Christians before our God.
Lest we forget