I got an email today with a prayer that was read by Joe Wright in 1996 to the Kansas House of Representatives when he was asked to act as Chaplain to the House. Here’s the prayer:
Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and seek your direction and guidance.
We know your Word says, "Woe to those who call evil good," but that’s exactly what we’ve done.
We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and inverted our values.
We confess that we have ridiculed the absolute truth of your Word and called it moral pluralism.
We have worshipped other gods and called it multiculturalism.
We have endorsed perversion and called it an alternative lifestyle.
We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.
We have neglected the needy and called it self-preservation.
We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.
We have killed our unborn and called it choice.
We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.
We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building esteem.
We have abused power and called it political savvy.
We have coveted our neighbors’ possessions and called it ambition.
We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.
Search us O God and know our hearts today; try us and see if there be some wicked way in us; cleanse us from every sin and set us free.
Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent here by the people of Kansas, and who have been ordained by you, to govern this great state.
Grant them your wisdom to rule and may their decisions direct us to the center of your will. I ask it in the name of your son, the living savior, Jesus Christ.
I applaud Mr. Wright for actually giving his opinion about what he feels is right and wrong. I read this and realized how tight-lipped I had become about telling people what I felt was right and wrong. There is nothing wrong with having an opinion on what’s right and what’s wrong, especially in an elected body such as the House or the Senate. To totally separate right and wrong from the law is impossible, even if a lot of what governs right and wrong in those contexts is governed by religion. Mr. Wright in no way suggested that anybody had to believe the things his prayer had to offer. Somehow, though, just through its utterance, a great number of people were very offended. How can we go on and on about Freedom of Speech and crucify this man for stating what he believed in…All I know is that Mr. Wright is welcomed in my home anytime, simply because he had the gumption to speak his mind.
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