Last night, I attended Pray Chicago along with a host of other Christians, all coming together to pray for peace and unity for the City of Chicago. Not once was there a mention of any campaign that singled out one race over another because last night there was only one focus: humanity mattered. We prayed for unity and peace because people of all races are concerned and overwhelmed by our city’s violence.
This was my second time attending the event, and from the moment we received free parking on Moody’s campus, we knew God was in the place. Free parking in Chicago? That’s unheard of, thanks to Mayor Rahm Emanuel, say many. Nevertheless, my church group and I, all clad in our Salvation Army attire, all headed up north from the Kroc Center in the West Pullman area which also serves as our church, to show our support, solidarity, and commitment for peace and unity, along with brotherly and sisterly love for Chicago.
It was a beautiful event.
I’m so glad I attended this because it gave me the refresher I needed to stay focused and committed to the calling God has on my life. So often, I can easily get distracted to begin to rely on my accomplishments instead of the voice and prompting of God. I have learned, and am continually reminded, that while I am grateful for all God has blessed me to achieve, my life is not my own. My career is not my own. I am merely a shell of a person God is using to achieve His purposes through my life. It’s just that when the bills start rolling in and once again there is more “month” than “money”, I have a tendency of falling right back into the same trap of fretting and agonizing over my daily needs and the future of my children, when all the while God has proven himself to be faithful and true.
When the Chicago Tabernacle Choir sang Travis Greene’s “Made a Way” last night, I could have run all up and through Moody’s church like the sanctified saints of my youth, but instead, I kept my cool and just sang along like I “had some sense” as my grandmother would have admonished. Nevertheless, I felt the Spirit of the Lord in that place and I was reminded to stop always thinking of myself and my needs and take a larger look at life to see the needs of others. I don’t have to be Mother Theresa to care. I just have to have a willingness to take off the blinders to look, listen, pray, and then act. Anyone can do this. Pray Chicago reminded me of that last night, and for that I am grateful.
I was also reminded of that while I am striving to climb the proverbial corporate ladder, other people are trying to heal from their grief from their loss of loved ones to senseless acts of violence. It really helped me to reconsider the important things of life. Yes, I want my children to focus on their studies and do well in school, but most importantly, I want them to be able to travel through our hometown and not have to worry about stray bullets killing them.
What happened to the days of my youth when kids could play outside in streets of Chicago? Pray Chicago reminded me that it’s not my neighbor’s responsibility or CPS or CPD or any other agency’s or organization’s responsibility to advocate for peace. We all play a part.
Mark Hinkl of the Agape Center, really summed it up when he said, “We’re coming together because the city is falling apart.”
For more information about Pray Chicago, click here.
To learn more about The Salvation Army Kroc Center, you can click here, or join me on Sunday mornings at 10am where I am the Adult Sunday School teacher, and at 11am you can join us for church where my husband leads Praise and Worship where we also sing Greene’s “Made a Way,” in which our humble may not be of the stature of the Chicago Tabernacle Choir, but we don’t do a bad job ourselves, if I must say so myself. 🙂
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