Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?

Covid still rages in spots around the globe.

Soul- and body-crushing white supremacy undergirds many of our systems.

Families and individuals struggle to live day-to-day without enough financial support.

The planet is dying.

People are dehumanized for who they are and whom they love.

Abuse briefly grabs deserved headlines, then recedes in public conversation before real changes occur.

Stigma and cost prevent those who are suffering from seeking mental healthcare.

War is often our first inclination rather than a last resort.

We casually toss around words that kill spirits and relationships.

How can you sleep at a time like this?

Wake up! Help us!

And yet…you are here with us in all that frightens.

You are constant.

You are faithful.

You are calm.

You are unafraid.

You are what you want us to be,

because if we are,

we will have your righteous power to still so many storms.

Lord, teach your peace to our hearts.

Laura Stephens-Reed is a clergy and congregational coach working with ministers and churches across the ecumenical spectrum. Having served in a variety of pastoral roles and denominations, she is primarily affiliated with the Alliance of Baptists and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and has ministerial standing in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Based in northwest Alabama (United States), Laura is married to a United Methodist pastor, and they have a eight-year-old son. She blogs weekly at laurastephensreed.com.

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