Prayer for August 31, 2021: Please pray with me. God of beginnings and endings, we pray a prayer of peace for the people of Afghanistan. As the American presence in Afghanistan is now over, our war of two decades comes to a close. In many ways this war has been distant and ambiguous – something way “over there.” There have been times when we have forgotten about it. Rarely did it impact our daily lives. At the same time there is an entire generation of Afgan citizens whose entire lives have been shaped by continuous war every day. It’s all they have ever known. We pray that they may know peace. Peace is not timid or weak. It is dangerous. It is a hard road. Violence is often the much easier option, but more often much costlier. We pray that there would be peace in a place where peace has been absent for so very long. We pray that our fellow citizens may put aside their desire to win partisan arguments and instead find a way to show gratitude for those who served. We pray that arm chair generals who are far away from harms way may silently reflect on the cost that some paid for this war. We pray for rest for our soldiers. We pray wisdom for our leaders. We pray that we may seek Shalom and that we may turn weapons of violence and destruction into ploughs. Amen.