Yesterday, a jury in Minneapolis found former police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of three charges in the murder of George Floyd. And while the verdict was being shared, a sixteen-year-old girl was killed by an officer responding to a 911 call on Columbus’ Southeast Side. These two events are reminders that we live with a double reality of comfort and grief, justice and injustice, hope and suffering, the already and the not-yet. This is also the nature of God’s kingdom. It is partially here, but not fully arrived. We have a long way to go as a church, as a community, and as a nation.
This is a catalytic moment for our community and for Vineyard Columbus, and we are committed to the ongoing and intentional work of discipleship and transformation that must happen if the church is to be a witness to the world of God’s goodness and justice.
Join us in praying for God’s kingdom of comfort, mercy, and justice to the family and friends of Ma’Khia Bryant. Pray for our law enforcement servants and our city leaders working for the public good while also working out changes to policing that must be made. Pray for everyone in our city living under the threat of violence or assault. Pray for those who are retraumatized through the repeated news of violence in our communities.
One of the lessons of this year is to be aware of how easy it is for our nation and our church to divide into factions based on what we are against. Let’s remember that our faith and our church and our city unite over what we stand for: We stand for justice. We stand for mercy. We stand for the dignity of all life. We stand for peace. We stand for accountability. We stand for truth. We stand for unity. We stand for victims of violence. We stand for public servants. We stand for our neighbors. We stand for being a best friend to our city. We stand arm in arm for the cause of Christ, who is our only hope.
The only way we can be for all of these things is by the power of the God’s Spirit and submission to Christ: We pray that the Lord would bless you and keep you, and make his face shine upon you, and make you strong and courageous, as He grows us together into the church He’s called us to be.
Come, Lord Jesus!