"Grace in Local Politics" - Chrissy Padilla Birkey
At Kingdom Causes Bellflower, our hope is that the Church and people in Bellflower are praying for our city: its leaders, businesses, schools, law enforcement, congregations, and neighborhoods. In fact, that was the inspiration behind KCB's Lenten Devotional Series! Over the last month, we have had multiple pastors and community leaders write devotions and blogs about how to pray for our local businesses, schools, congregations, and neighbors. Today I'd like to focus on how we can pray for our local city leaders.
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. - 1 Timothy 2:1-2
I try to make it out to a city council meeting at least once a month. The meetings are quite informative and often amusing. Every two weeks decisions are made at City Hall that shape our community's future. But how often do I take time to pray for the leaders who are making these decisions? Not often enough! It's easy to critique them when I disagree with a decision (or hi-five them after a meeting when I liked something they said), but what does it look like to truly care for and pray for them on a regular basis?
In addition to their responsibility to serve in our city, each of them has a life, a family, and all the joys and sorrows that come along with those things. In fact, three of our council members have full-time jobs or own their own businesses, and the other two are retired, but incredibly active in local service clubs. These guys have a lot on their plate!
In a time when politics is dividing our nation, let's commit to a different political narrative in our City by showing grace and actively praying for our local leaders. And by the way, showing grace doesn't always mean that you will agree with them. It does, however, help lay the groundwork for a respectful conversation about your differing perspectives. (In fact, if you don't thoughtfully share your ideas and opinions, how do you expect your elected officials to represent you?)
Please join me in praying for Bellflower's City Council members and key staff as they do their best to fulfill our city's mission statement: To protect and enrich the quality of life, to make Bellflower an excellent place to live, work and play.
Mayor Sonny Santa Ines
Mayor Pro Tem Juan Garza
Councilmember Ray Dunton
Councilmember Raymond Hamada
Councilmember Dan Koops
Key City Staff
City Manager - Jeff Stewart
Public Works Director - Len Gorecki
Economic Development Director - Jim DellaLonga
Public Safety Director - Joel Hockman
Planning Director - Elizabeth Corpuz
Parks & Recreation Director - PJ Mellana
City Clerk - Mayra Ochiqui
HOW TO PRAY:
Pray that God would inspire them with dreams and ideas that would make Bellflower a thriving and healthy community for all neighbors.
Pray that God will give them wisdom, discernment, and integrity as they make difficult decisions on behalf of the residents of Bellflower.
Pray that God will bless and protect their families, especially when they have to work long hours on behalf of our city
*I encourage all of you to attend at least one meeting so you can see how government works at a local level. The Bellflower City Council meetings take place every 2nd and 4th Monday night at 7pm, and you can see upcoming agenda's here.
1 Timothy 2:1-2 “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.”
Jeremiah 29:7 “Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”
About the Author: Chrissy Padilla Birkey is the Executive Director of KCB. When they’re not busy chasing their toddler around, Chrissy and her husband, Cody, like to dream and "nerd out" about ways to see Bellflower thrive.