Prayer for January 12: Please pray with me. God of all people, how long will it take for us to get this – to really understand this to the point that it changes us? How long will it be until we see other human beings with different skin color as our brothers and sisters? How long will it be until we are willing to go beyond skin deep? How long will it be until we stop blaming others for what happens to us – anyone who looks, sounds, speaks, or thinks differently? How long will it be until we stop building walls to separate us from those that are different and we start beating swords into plowshares? How long will it be until the lion and lamb can lie together? Break the chains that imprison us. Break the chains of racism. Break the chains. Believing that one skin color is superior to another is asinine Lord. Yet, so often we live in self-segregated worlds. Why? Fear? Move us past the fear we have. Move us past the fear of what might be if things change. Open our eyes to see the humanity of others. Open our eyes to seeing how we benefit from systems designed to make some of us comfortable. Open our eyes to the outcast in our midst. And not only open our eyes, make us uncomfortable and inconvenienced enough to live your calling in our lives – to proclaim boldly your loving presence, to follow your lead in breaking the chains that enslave us all, to be your hands in breaking the chains of sin that bind us. Amen.