As we go our separate ways…

In a bit of a twist from my normal rants and raves about politics, I was asked to deliver a benediction this afternoon for an organization I hold in high regard. I have to admit it was one of the most chilling tasks I’ve ever been charged with. But when someone thinks enough of you to ask you to pray for 200 people you might want to take serious consideration. Is it God asking? Is it man? Is it out of sheer circumstance (was I a last resort)? Or was it divine appointment? Honestly, I studied more about prayer this weekend than I ever have in my life. I studied Matthew 6 a great deal and discovered more about myself than I have in quite some time. I was more calm just before and more nervous during than at any other time I’d spent in front a crowd. Why? Was it because I considered myself unworthy of the charge? Am I too much of a practicing heathen? Was I out of my league? None of the above. In so much as preparing this very brief devotion, I became a new person. I’m surrounded by more peace now than ever before. I grew up this afternoon, in a number of ways.
== My planned remarks ======================Thank you all.I first want to personally thank Lajuana Barton and her immediate staff for their continued diligence in this program. I don’t even have the words to express how necessary you are to this chapter of these young men and woman’s lives.

To the Alumni, for maintaining such a caring and prudent hand in our dealings with the interns.

To the many sponsors, for which their involvement creates the milestones on these students’ journeys. We see your shared enthusiasm about our agenda each year you decide to partner with us.

Thank you, to the parents who provide the very necessary ingredients for achievement. Great intelligence and a good heart can only come from your example.

Thank you Senator Royce West. For believing in us all. For setting us on a glide path, not only forward but upwards.

Much appreciation again for Dr. Emmett J. Conrad and his wonderful wife Eleanor for being the very lifeblood of this monumental initiative. One can only hope to achieve the same acumen and accolade but with your support we can certainly go even farther.

And a special thank you to the students for being exceptional. I have personally seen your resumes and seen the looks in your eyes when talking about your own futures and it does nothing less than inspire me.

It is with great honor and privilege that I pray with and for you all.

[…every head bowed and every eye closed please…]

“Our Father, which art in Heaven”

“Hallowed be thy Name”
…how sacred and magnificent your name.

“Thy kingdom come”

“Thy will be done, in earth as it is in heaven”
…because we need your will completely in our lives.

“Give us this day our daily bread”
…because You are so fundamental to our survival and sustenance.

“And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us”
…because it in this combination only that we are worthy of your forgiveness.

“And lead us not into temptation”
…renew our individual discernment.

“But deliver us from evil”

We ask you this blessed afternoon for your blessings, your mercy, your strength, and your grace.

We ask you for traveling grace as we go our separate ways.

From Prairie View to NYU, we need your grace for our journeys.

We thank you for this occasion and these blessed participants.

They are exceptional only because of your divine selection.

But most of all these things they are necessary to your purpose.

We thank you.

Let all those who’ll do justice and love mercy say Amen.

Amen.

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