It’s been three months since a bomb exploded at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
A few nights after the bombing, I watched with the rest of the nation as the police closed in on the surviving bombing suspect. I saw the tweet from the Boston Police department that inspired a sigh of relief heard round the world.
Later, as I settled into bed, I took one last look at Twitter – and I saw this:
I stared at the phone for a moment.
I knew what to do.
I just didn’t want to do it.
I didn’t want to pray for a man who was so cold as to create a bomb desgined to project nails into the body of a little girl.
I didn’t want to pray for the man responsible for so many people losing their limbs and facing a lifetime of recovery.
I didn’t want to pray for this young man who killed a little boy, a young woman
I didn’t want to pray for a man who was involved in the shooting of a police officer.
But, the tweet was right. Jesus did tell us to pray for our enemies.
It was one of the moments I had no words.
And three months on, I still don’t.
I don’t remember if I mumbled a weak, half-hearted prayer that night. I don’t remember if I came to God with an honest prayer that I didn’t know what to pray.
I do know this: Words never escape the Holy Spirit. When I come half-hearted, doubting, honest, reluctant, but desperately wanting to follow Him, the Spirit himself intercedes.
Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. (Romans 8:26, ESV)
And so I come, stumbling, towards God …