Olympia is the state capital and when the Legislature is in session, as they are now, things are just a bit busier downtown. The local paper is filled with reports of various pieces of legislation moving through the stages of hearings and votes. News of interest groups coming to town to stage protests or lobbyists meeting with elected officials is all around us in these days. Earlier this year, in one of the Meet and Greet gatherings where I was introduced to the congregation one potluck at a time, the suggestion was made that we might find ways to be hospitable to legislators who are in Olympia temporarily during the session. With help from some church members, we collated the addresses of all the legislators and have mailed a letter inviting them to worship with us if the spirit moves them to do so. The invitation was extended to each senator and each representative, with the promise made that we could be their church “home away from home.”
But I made another promise to these lawmakers — one that I need your help in keeping. I promised that we would be in prayer for them throughout the session. This is some of what I wrote to our elected officials:
The Faith Community is diverse, as I am sure you know. However, despite our differences in terms of theology and practice, we are generally united on the need to care for the poor and the hungry, to bring healing to the broken and the sick, to lift up the fallen and protect the weak. We recognize the creation as a good gift from God and desire to preserve it for our children and our children’s children. We believe that God calls us all to seek justice and love mercy. The First Olympia UMC community will be praying that you may do these things with passion and perseverance. It matters not from which side of the political spectrum you draw support; be assured of our prayers for you!
Can you help me keep that promise? Will you pray for our leaders of state, from local to national, and especially those who have gathered here in Olympia to make important decisions about often troubling issues? Will you pray that their decisions will be guided by the Holy Spirit, that the laws they enact will be laws that are just and merciful and reflective of the will of God for God’s people?