I’m a volunteer police chaplain for the Alpharetta Police. In that role, I was asked to offer a prayer for last night’s Alpharetta Relay for Life walk. Relay for Life is organized by the American Cancer Society to raise money for cancer research. This was the prayer I prayed:
Merciful God, in whom we live and move and have our being, we give you our thanks and praise for the gift of life that you give each of us. Every heartbeat, every breath we take, every moment of life we enjoy is an ongoing, gracious gift from you. Help us to live not with a sense of entitlement but with a sense of your graciousness, never taking for granted this good gift of life, but instead using it to love, serve, comfort, heal, and encourage others. May all the money raised here today be used to that good end. Bless these many volunteers. Keep them strong, healthy, and well-hydrated as they walk for others.
Bless those cancer survivors who are with us this evening, whose own battle against this terrible disease inspires us. Give them continued health. Even as we celebrate their victories, our hearts are heavy as we remember loved ones who didn’t win that fight. Comfort, encourage, and strengthen everyone who grieves this day. Give us the faith to see that in you death, suffering, and evil do not have the last word. Love has the last word. For the sake of this love we are here. For the sake of this love we will walk. And for the sake of this love we will work—until this disease can no longer claim another victim. With hearts overflowing with love, we humbly pray. Amen.