A prayer for Bellflower -- By Pastor Tom Hocking

Today the city of Bellflower hosted it's annual State of the City Address. As with many cities, Bellflower is facing some challenging days ahead as budgets tighten and the economy continues to struggle. The city manager entitled the talk, "The Rocky Road Ahead". I was particularly blessed by the prayer that my good friend Pastor Tom Hocking prayed as the invocation for the event. What he prayed was a powerful blessing for our city and I've included it below. Please pray it as you read:

Heavenly Father,
Thank you for this day,
Thanks for our city and the men and women who serve it and protect it.
Thanks for the opportunity to soberly consider where we stand as a community.
These are obviously difficult and uncertain times and I confess that I have struggled with feelings of anxiety—perhaps many of us have.
But God, when I think about it, the times when I have grown the most as a person have been times of great trouble, not times of ease.
So Lord Jesus, while we pray passionately for the peace and prosperity of Bellflower, I want to pray even more passionately that on the way toward peace (whether that peace is personal peace or social peace or financial peace or relational peace). . .I pray that on the way toward that peace, we would not forget that you and you alone are the giver of real peace—ultimate and eternal peace.
God, the road in front of us may indeed be a bit rocky. . .but considering that you once said that the wide and easy road leads to destruction. . .maybe a few potholes aren’t that bad.
But please help us to negotiate those potholes with grace and wisdom—and above all to make this journey together—loving each other more than ourselves and loving you most of all. I pray for Mayor smith and our Concilmembers: Bomgaars, Dunton, Koops, and Larsen; for Mike and his staff—that you would crown their efforts with abundant success. In Christ’s name, I pray Amen.