On May 21, 2013, United States Senate Chaplain Barry Black prayed the following at the General Conference headquarters to mark the 150th anniversary of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
Author and Finisher of our faith, You have been our Hope in ages past, and our Hope for years to come.
Thank You for this opportunity to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and for the privilege of unveiling a new exhibit on Adventist history at this world headquarters building today.
Lord, for a century and a half, You have used this church to bring deliverance to captives, the recovery of sight to the blind, and to free those who suffer.
Forgive us for the chapters in our history when we were missing in action and unavailable to help the lost, the lonely, and the least. Lord, forgive us for being silent when we should have spoken, and for speaking when we should have been silent. Forgive us, O God, for our sins of commission and omission. We claim Your promise in First John 1:9, that if we confess our sins, You are faithful and just and will forgive us of our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Thank You, Lord, for your forgiving power.
Continue to challenge us as a church when we are too well pleased with ourselves, when our dreams came true because they are too small, when we arrived safely simply because we sailed too close to the shore.
We recommit ourselves today to accomplish Your great mission. We recommit ourselves today to Calvary and the blood that sets us free. We recommit ourselves, O God, today to bring Your love to all who need encouragement, to all who lack food and clothing, to all who are cold and cheerless, to all who are sick and shut-in, to all who are incarcerated, and to all who long for home and friendship.
We recommit ourselves today to dare more boldly, to venture on wider seas, where storms will show Your mastery, where losing sight of land we will find Your stars.
O God of ages past, push back the horizon of our hopes and lead us into a future fueled by faith, focus and fortitude.
And hasten the day when the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ rise, then may those of us who are still alive and remaining be caught up to meet our blessed Savior in the air and to live with Him throughout the ceaseless cycles of eternity.
Maranatha, even so come, Lord Jesus. We pray this prayer, in the majestic name of our soon coming Savior and King.
Image: Ansel Oliver/ANN.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/5292