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Loving Heavenly Father, we thank you for the relative security we enjoy in this country and for the freedom we have to worship you openly and without fear. We thank you for those who have gone before us to ensure this security and freedom. May we never take it for granted.
We carry a burden in our hearts as we think on those who have lost their lives or have suffered physical, emotional, spiritual or mental wounding, and in some instances all of these, as a consequence of war. We include not only those who wore uniform to defend their country but also those family members who now share in the tragedy of loss.
We sense, Father, that our burdens are small compared with the sadness of heart you bear because your children have not yet learned the hard lessons derived from conflict and war. We continue to carry belligerent attitudes. We continue to demand what we wrongly believe to be our rights. We continue to try to justify ourselves and our motives. We continue to fail to live as you would have us live, in loving and obedient service towards you and in harmony with one another.
Forgive us, Father, and change us to be more like your Son Jesus Christ. Help us to love and to respect one another. Banish from the human heart all that resorts to conflict and all that leads to war.
Help us to live sacrificially as did your Son, who lived and died for us that we may be truly free. Amen.