Jan 042019 7 Responses

A Prayer for Our New Mayor

On January 4, 2019, my hometown inaugurated her new mayor. George McGill is the first African-American mayor in Fort Smith. This is my invocation before his inaugural address. 

Almighty God,

Great is Your faithfulness, Lord, unto us. Even on this cold January morning, new mercies we see. Your word says “every good and perfect gift comes from the Father of lights.” Our new mayor has never claimed to be perfect, but he is good—good to those who know him, good to the country he has served, good for the community he now leads. So we begin this day with a prayer of thanksgiving for our new mayor—George McGill.

Yet even as we thank you that he is with us today Father, we set him apart from us on this day for the task of leadership. Be with him. “Establish the work of his hands.” Allow him to keep his heart of service even when some don’t want to be served. Empower him to keep his tongue of eloquence even when the critics are harsh. Ensure his heart be full of hope even when the malaise of apathy is around.

Father Your word has shown us that good leadership demands good character. So we thank you for George’s heart, his integrity, and his service to You. Father, even in this day that values pragmatism, keep this mayor principled. In this day that values the shortcut, give him a vision for the long-haul. In this day of “gotcha-politics” keep his mind on true public service.

And Father, we recognize that even though the waters appear calm on this beautiful morning, there are some rip-currents in this community. There are some people and institutions who on the surface give the appearance of integrity but underneath have a swift current of injustice guiding their actions. Father, give this Mayor a soft hand, but a stiff backbone. Give him a quiet determinism that marches toward justice no matter what he might face. Let him be as “wise as serpents and innocent as doves.”

But not just him, Father. Be with us as well. Let us be voices of encouragement that drown out the voices of pessimism. Let us be quick to act when most are just quick to talk. Let us love in a way that challenges the powerful and comforts the downtrodden.

And finally Father, let this be a day for the children of Fort Smith. Let George’s life and position be one that encourages hope and possibility from Midland Avenue to Mile-Tree Drive. Let my children and all the children of Fort Smith know that leadership, influence, and service is just as likely to come from Boone Ave as it is from Broken Hill Drive.

Lord, all he will need you will provide so give George “strength for today and a bright hope for tomorrow.”

In Jesus name,


7 Responses to A Prayer for Our New Mayor
  1. Sherry Toliver Reply

    A wonderful, thoughtful prayer full of wisdom and love. Thanks, Kevin.

  2. Wanda Simpson Reply

    Mayor George McGill is my cousin. I was born in Arkansas but our family moved to Cleveland Ohio, when I was a little girl,I still consider it my home. I love him very much. I know he will continue to establish God’s name. That was an awesome prayer that you said for him and the community. Blessings to you.

  3. Linda Reply

    A good tradition to pray the Mayor into office. Great marching orders

  4. Elle Owolabi Reply

    Hallelujah! I sensed God’s love, power and sound mind that was SURELY poured into everyone that attended the ceremony, as I read your words of prayer. God bless you Pastor Kevin, for your courage to stand in the gap, in spirit and truth! God bless America, for continuing to be a nation, for now, we remain FREE to worship and pray in the mighty and worthy name of the only true Lord and Savior, Jesus!!

  5. Richard Tinder Reply

    I thought your prayer as as good as any prayer I’ve ever heard, well spoken and very well thought out. I was in attendance. Your a really good man and very good relater of the word, ‘Preacher”. Sometimes we may not agree on some topics but when it comes to the word of god there are none better! Your presentation is always right on target, and I’ve heard you really are good at golf. Had to gig you a little I knew you would appreciate that. No for what it’s worth i respect you a great deal, Job well done.

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