theoraclemag

Senate Chaplain’s Prayers for Debt Crisis Become More Urgent

In Uncategorized on August 1, 2011 at 9:46 pm

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As the Senate has mired itself in bickering and deadlock this week, there has been at least one voice of the panic rising in the country around Washington.
It’s been the deep, solemn voice of the Senate’s chaplain, retired Admiral Barry C. Black.
A longtime Navy chaplain and Seventh-Day Adventist minister, Black opens Senate sessions with a brief prayer. Over the last few days–as the Senate has slid closer to a national default–those prayers seem to have revealed Black as one of the most worried people in the chamber.
Back on July 20, Black was speaking only in hopeful generalities. In the prayer that began that session, he asked the Almighty to “give to our lawmakers the wisdom to know the role they should play, in keeping freedom’s holy light bright.”
But, as the days passed by, it became apparent that the Senate was not showing any more wisdom that it had previously. By last Tuesday, Black’s request indicated that his senators might need more divine help.
“Keep them,” he prayed, “from the pit of disunity and discord. And empower them to build bridges of coooperation. Give them the courage and humility to do what is right, knowing that you are the only constituent they absolutely must please.”
But lawmakers only descended further into that pit of disunity. In fact, the Senate seemed to be digging that hole deeper.
So Black’s prayers began to warn of the consequences if the Senate did not straighten up and act right.
“Lord,” he prayed on Wednesday, “as our nation faces the potentially catastrophic, inspire our lawmakers to seek your counsel which will stand forever.”
Still nothing. The two sides remained far apart, and the “potentially catastrophic” crept closer.
On Friday, Black dialed it up another notch.
“Lord, help them to comprehend the global repercussions of some poor decisions, and the irreversibility of some tragic consequences,” he prayed. “Quicken their ears to hear. Their eyes to see. Their hearts to believe and their wills to obey you. Before…”
And here Black slowed his usual stately cadence down even further, in case people weren’t getting it.
“…it is. too late.”
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