The number is staggering. To put it into context, at the height of the 2008-2009 Financial Collapse the highest unemployment report was just over 650,000. This week’s unemployment numbers are five times the previous high.
As followers of Jesus, how do we respond when our neighbors are out of work?
Disciples of Jesus respond to this and every problem with prayer and loving, creative action. Prayer is always our first response. We go to God in prayer to ask God to give grace, and peace, and hope to our neighbors whose worlds have been turned upside down.
We pray for them and, at the same time, we prayerfully ask the simple yet powerful question, “Lord, what do you want to do through me?” and
then we listen for God’s voice as to how best to turn our prayers into loving and creative action.
We pray, we act, and in doing so we can watch God work through our creative and loving action to answer the prayers of our neighbors.
One of the ways our church is responding is by doubling the meals we are serving on Wednesday nights through Red Stick Together. Last Wednesday your generosity allowed us to feed 100 people. This week your generosity helped us feed 200 people.
Your gifts and service are how God will answer the prayers of our neighbors who are hungry and have lost their jobs.
This morning I remembered a prayer for the unemployed from the
Book of Common Prayer
. I invite you to join me in praying it today.
For the Unemployed
Heavenly Father, we remember before you those who suffer want and anxiety from lack of work. Guide the people of our land so to use our public and private wealth that all may find suitable and fulfilling employment, and receive just payment for their labor; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Now that you have prayed. Here is a simple way you can act.
Southeast Ministries is in desperate need of cereal, grits, and oatmeal. The next time you go to the store please buy an extra box or two of these items and drop them off at the Southeast Ministries office located at 476 Sharp Rd, next to our church campus. Your gifts will be the answer to our neighbor's prayers.
Grace & Peace,
Rev. Donnie Wilkinson