A Prayer for Unity

Here's a portion of a prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr that I pray today with great joy and purpose:

We pray, O Lord, for your church, that it may be healed of its divisions by your grace; that it may teach your word with courage to a sinful world, and may mediate with true charity your love and mercy to all men. Strengthen every ministry of reconciliation therein with your spirit.  Grant that it may be a true community of grace in which the pride of race or nation is humbled, where the strong and mighty are brought to judgment, and the meek and lowly are lifted up. Make it more faithful to its Lord, and more instant to meet the needs of men. Amen.

No prayer more faithfully summarizes what ACT 3 is about in “equipping leaders for unity in Christ’s mission.” We love the church, all of it, and we long to see it healed of divisions so that it can teach God’s word with courage to a sinful world. We want to see the church become missional, which is expressed here in Niebuhr’s request that the church “may meditate with true charity on your love and mercy to all men” and “strengthen every ministry of reconciliation therein with your [S]pirit.” We long for renewal, which will “make it [the church] more faith to its Lord, and more instant to meet the needs of men.”