Lord God, John Knox once prayed, “Give me Scotland or I die.” I confess that my vision is not as broad as his. But Lord…give me Peoria. Give me the South Side. Give me the Near North Side and Downtown and Bradley University and Renaissance Park. Give me the poor and the broken. Give me the prostitutes and the johns, the crack addicts and the drug dealers, the abused children and their abusers, the poor and the rich. Give me the broken of our city, the discarded detritus of our society, and build from them a temple for Your name.
And with it, Lord, give me an open and willing heart. Give me the love and compassion to reach out once again to the hurting who lash out. Give me the hospitality to open my home to the dirty and inconvenient. Give me the willingness to sacrifice my comfort, my sanity, and my privacy for the sake of those you send my way. Make me the kind of man that I need to be to carry out this mission.
Lord, I walk the streets and alleys of my city, and I see a people who desperately need You. Do not be far off.
Give me Peoria, Lord, or I die.