March 7 marked the 50th anniversary of what is remembered as "Bloody Sunday." On that date in 1965, some Alabama state troopers viciously beat black citizens marching for voting rights in Selma. Televised images of the attacks shocked the nation and catalyzed the introduction and eventual passage of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Our nation has made tremendous progress on race relations since that time. We have taken strides toward becoming a nation where, as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. dreamed, people are judged by the content of their character, not by the color of their skin. But we still have a ways to go.
The shooting of two law enforcement officers at a protest in Ferguson, Missouri, Wednesday night reminds us of a complementary truth: The pursuit of justice in society cannot be accomplished with violence. Dr. King recognized this, which is why he advocated nonviolent means of social change.
We recognize that the spirit of lawlessness works in many ways: through unjust systems as well as violent individuals. Therefore, in light of recent events, I call on Assemblies of God churches this Sunday or at subsequent times to pray for our nation. Specifically:
And then, after prayer, I urge pastors - if they have not already done so - to take concrete steps to build relationships:
In the Sermon on the Mount, the Lord Jesus Christ taught us that we are salt and light. Let us, as salt, preserve what is best in our communities. And let us, as light, shine on the path toward reconciliation to God and justice and peace among our neighbors.
- See more at: http://penews.org/Article/Call-to-Prayer-for-Healing-in-Our-Nation/#sthash.R5fapTTc.dpuf