ECCLESIOLOGICAL ETCHINGS January 30, 2023 A Prayer For The Week: Why are we incapable of ending the violence? Why is it that our egos are so easily bruised, leaving us feeling wounded and in need of retaliation? Where are the alternatives to violence and the capacity for restraint? We often come to you, O Generous God, with questions that appear to have no answer. We speak our frustration, confusion, and heartache to the heavens, desperately seeking your guiding Spirit to offer something novel, something beyond anything previously imagined. Yet it probably does not require anything too radical in the whole scheme of things, just those of us who are willing to learn the ways of peace, be the models of Christ-like living, and stand in the gap when necessary. Whether it is unconstrained anger, unhealthy systems incapable of self-control, or people with a bad mix of power and insecurity, the world needs those who are willing to represent your peace. And we cannot conclude this prayer without asking for that peace to begin with us. Amen.