A Subversive Prayer for National Leaders

In a recent blog post, Brian Walsh (co-author of the provocative Colossions Remixed commentary) offered a prayer for the upcoming Canadian elections, which were moved forward to this spring by a vote of non-confidence in the current administration.

Around halfway through, Walsh enters into a section contrasting the lordship of Christ with the position of our elected officials.  Being an elected official in a republic is both a high and a low position.  It is high because you are directly enabled to wield power, pass laws, etc., but it is low because you are, ultimately, a public servant, entrusted with representing not yourself but your constituents.

But Christ’s lordship is yet higher and lower still.  It is higher because Christ is ultimately far more powerful than “the most powerful man in the world,” the President of the United States.  And it is lower because Christ emptied himself (kenotically), not clinging to his rights as deity but taking on the form of slave.

Here is what Walsh prays.

Before you, Lord, every tongue will confess,
but you were never democratically elected.
Before you, Lord, every knee will bow,
though you lost the only vote you ever faced against Barabbas.

You are the exalted one because you were first raised high on a cross.
Yours was not the campaign trail of media moments,
but a path to the cross.
Yours was not a narrow obedience to the party line,
but an obedience to death,
……even death on a cross.

No one would ever elect you, Lord,
but we dare to call ourselves citizens of your Kingdom.

Send your Spirit upon us so that we might be discerning citizens.

What does this mean for Christian political identity?  How do you pray for national leaders?


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