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Poison Control Prayer

When I get in the car

And shift into reverse

Back out to the driveway

A habit I’ll rehearse.

It’s almost automatic

“Lord, keep us safe,” I pray

That prayer becomes more meaningful

With every passing day.

‘Cause you could be at school

Or picking produce at the store

You may be buying stamps

Or resting on the porch.

You might be at the office

Or watching a parade

Or singing hymns at church

On any given day.

Then a crazy with a gun

And a plan intent to kill

Opens fire on innocents

And causes blood to spill.

My heart is weeping, Jesus!

Three little kids attacked

Three grownups went to work

Six never will come back.

Nashville is in mourning

Parents crushed and grieving

Children traumatized

Shell-shocked spouses seething

Cracked right down the middle

Their world is torn asunder

Families ripped apart

Will mine be next? I wonder.

I refuse to live in fear

Neither have I confidence

So I plead my fervent prayer

Closed eyes, raw heart, knees bent:

Lord, as I venture out this day,

Keep drive-by shooters from my way.

Protect me from the bitter wrath

Of some gun-wielding psychopath.

Keep our children safe today

Help them learn the peaceful way

May pain and trauma meet with healing

Let Love abound in me, revealing

That GOOD, not evil will prevail.

Lord, heal our hearts. May we inhale

A whiff of hope and inspiration.

Heal our sin-sick violent nation.

And let that peace begin with me

It’s hard to love my enemy.

But hate breeds hate and I refuse

To let that poison be my food.

Give me grace, God, to forgive

And one more day, Lord

Let me live.

Copyright 2023 by Kate Carpenter

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