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Prayers

Lebanon Prayer: Hell

God,

Lebanon is not yet in the place of damnation. But the president fears it is not that far off.

Asked where the country is headed if no government forms: To Hell, he replied, as if it was clear.

And as if to prefigure—munitions exploded, of a Shiite militia which stored in the south.

For too many, hell is already here.

Food prices are rising 300 percent. Life savings evaporate. Fuel oil is rationed. Even an egg needs black market supply.

And then the prime minister-designate quit.

He insisted on experts to lead a small cabinet, with ministries rotating among all the sects.

But Shiites insisted on the file for finance. As long as some posts stay sect-based they must name their choice.

Government formation is back to square one.

Abandon all hope, as in Dante’s Inferno?

 The gnashing of teeth, as the gospels describe?

God, there is no hell where you are present.

Abandon not Lebanon, nor the people therein.

But will France?

Its initiative lies in tatters, though a Shiite leader still supports its content.

Will it sanction as threatened? Will it keep on hold contingent aid?

France warned that the nation risks disappearing. Will Lebanese citizens hasten this end?

Emigration. Obstinance. Rivalry. Greed.

Responsibility?

The world has its share, both East and West. Some see only a pawn in their regional game.

But God, strengthen your leaders to shoulder this burden.

Give vision to see the small glimmer of light.

And humility, to call for dependence on you.

Designate a prime minister to roll once more the boulder. A Sisyphus able to surmount the peak.

But with Lebanon snared in this form of perdition, hold fast the rock upon which they can build.

A city on a hill. A message to the nations.

A free land of liberty, welcome to all.

Let no one pretend, God. So few are hopeful. Hell is other people, so many despair.

You are a God of rescue, of ransom. What payment is needed?

Repentance. Confession. For each one, his own.

Grant your mercy. None deserve it.

Spare Lebanon, humbled, from righteous fire.

Bless all who serve it, wishing its peace.

Amen.


Lebanon Prayer places before God the major events of the previous week, asking his favor for the nation living through them.

It seeks for values common to all, however differently some might apply them. It honors all who strive on her behalf, however suspect some may find them.

It offers no solutions, but desires peace, justice, and reconciliation. It favors no party, but seeks transparency, consensus, and national sovereignty.

How God sorts these out is his business. Consider joining in prayer that God will bless the people and establish his principles, from which all our approximations derive.


Sometimes prayer can generate more prayer. While mine is for general principles, you may have very specific hopes for Lebanon. You are welcome to post these here as comments, that others might pray with you as you place your desires before God.

If you wish to share your own prayer, please adhere to the following guidelines:

1) The sincerest prayers are before God alone. Please consult with God before posting anything.

2) If a prayer of hope, strive to express a collective encouragement.

3) If a prayer of lament, strive to express a collective grief.

4) If a prayer of anger, refrain from criticizing specific people, parties, sects, or nations. While it may be appropriate, save these for your prayers alone before God.

5) In every prayer, do your best to include a blessing.

I will do my best to moderate accordingly. Thank you for praying for Lebanon and her people.

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