The Book Of Urban Prayer, Crack Houses
This one is going to be more personal than others because I have been here. Not with a needle and spoon or little bags of white powder. Not with lighters and cash in hand for a high. I stood in the filth of these flophouses in Tyvek and rubber gloves, I was there to clean up the mess.
And you heard my prayers before this book as ever thought of. You heard the why’s and the how’s cried in the silences as my co-workers left for lunch. You even helped me stumble across Mrs. Smith’s 9th-grade math homework and watched me weep.
Why are these places allowed in your sovereignty to exist and how much of your restraint is spent on their doorsteps? Inside these walls, horrible things happen in the pursuit of joy, bliss, and freedom. A call heaven answers with no withdrawal. Yet they persist as if your might could not wipe ecstasy and heroin off the map of existence with a thought.
But instead, these souls and bodies that bear your image inject Hell in a needle and serve Hades on a spoon.
Why do we chase your gifts of heaven and paradise down such dark corridors? Why is sin and addiction found so easily down these deep alleys? Perhaps this is why you came, Jesus, to send others in your name. In Tyvek and rubber boots with hearts ready to work and hands ready to pray. Are these palaces and dungeons of addiction the Samaria you spoke of? Are these members of your body, skin bare and chemically dependent, the least of these your brothers?
Bless these places that of all our houses in the city need your blessing. Help them turn to you for the fill of their need for love affection and purpose. Find willing souls in coveralls and badges to break these places of drug worship up. So that their inhabitants might come to know you as sustaining and powerful. Keep us watchful over our friends and family who dabble in this destructive world. Help us be watchful of our loved ones who wander near these holes of Hell in pursuit of “fun” and a “good time”. But most of all restore what’s broken as only you can do.
Restore the children caught in the fires of this hell to loving families of blood and church affiliation. That loving brothers and sisters in Christ, who can come alongside and help those most affected by the use of others cope and survive. Restore the chemical imbalances forced into the veins of people just a sinful as us. May we never forget that our gossip, our secret porn, our Facebook slander is just as vicious and destructive than anything found in these dens of iniquity. Bless the people trapped in the cycles of self-hate and addiction and help them break free into your love Lord.