Lord, we lament the violence that has broken out in Baltimore.
We lament the anger that has been boiling in the black community for centuries.
We lament the greed and hate of whites who enslaved blacks in the name of economic prosperity for whites.
We lament how whites built the United States on white supremacy.
We lament the genocide of Native Americans at the hand of white, power hungry, monsters. Monsters who founded our towns, government and current civilization.
We lament the lack of repentance.
We lament the pain.
We lament the hate.
We lament the division and hostility.
We lament the misunderstanding of affluent white people as to why a poor black person living in Baltimore would feel the way they do about the system.
We lament the broken down families in the inner city.
We lament generational poverty.
We lament that restitution wasn’t given to slaves along with their freedom.
We lament the generations of abuse and lack of education slaves endured.
We lament that slaves were left to fend for themselves after slavery was abolished. We lament that many had to return to the very fields they were enslaved to just to survive.
We lament Jim Crow.
We lament redlining.
We lament white flight.
We lament how most white people have never sat under a black pastor, teacher, professor, principle, or dean.
We lament the abandonment of blacks to urban decay, poor schools, poor jobs and poor living conditions.
We lament how slave traders tore children away from their parents and spouses away from one another.
We lament the raping of black women slaves by white slave-owners, all in earshot of the slave husband.
We lament the pastors and theologians who owned slaves.
We lament the churches and seminaries who didn’t allow blacks into positions of leadership.
We lament the segregation in churches today, and how it only perpetuates the anger, distrust and animosity amongst races.
We lament that the supernatural power of Jesus to unite us and reconcile us to one another continues to go untapped as we prefer comfort and familiarity to Kingdom and humility.
We lament the way the black rioters of Baltimore felt that acting out in violence was the only voice they had left.
We lament how we see these acts of violence as disconnected from a history of being abuse.
We lament the desire for revenge.
We lament for Freddie Gray. We lament for Freddie Gray’s family.
We lament the impossible job that Baltimore police officers face.
We lament racism.
We lament all of the black people who will now be further labeled as deviant (and worse) because of the acts of a select few on the streets of Baltimore.
We lament how persons of color feel out of place in American society.
We lament the white people who don’t care.
We lament on behalf of the scores of blacks who have overcome their uphill system, live flourishing lives and extoll their younger brethren to do the same, only to be told by whites that “all blacks” are this way or that blacks need to stop “victimizing” themselves.
We lament that there doesn’t seem to be a solution to all of this.
We lament our completely broken state, Jesus. We lament how messed up we are. We lament how selfish we are. We lament how hopeless we are.
We lament that the Church has seen the gospel as something only meant to get us to be nice and get to heaven, not something that causes us to surrender our comforts in order that the way things happen in heaven will also happen on earth. (Matthew 6:10)
We lament that we love money more than people.
We lament that we don’t stop and listen to those in pain.
We lament the pain.
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