A couple mornings ago blue lights outside my window startled me awake around 5 am. I peeked out and saw not one, but two police cruisers around a semi pulling a fertilize spreader and a hay elevator. I went about my morning routine, and by the time I returned with coffee, they were still there with the predawn traffic crawling past.
By the time I’d been writing for a couple hours, they were still there, flooded in the fiery glory of sunrise. Traffic was still backed up, and the policemen were waving them past. The driver chatted with an officer, and from here I guessed he must have had a blow out.
Poor guy. I’d hate to have to change a tire on a semi holding a fertilize spreader.
Apparently the driver had more sense than I do, because he wisely unloaded the equipment before trying to jack up the tire. By 8 o’clock the truck was gone and traffic was zipping by again.
The sight of those police officers outside my window at 5 in the morning has stuck with me. It’s so easy for me to take for granted that, all over the county, men and women patrol the streets day and night to keep things safe and smooth for the rest of us.
What if those officers hadn’t been there with that truck driver? The poor guy! As he unloaded the equipment from the flatbed he’d have had to figure out a way to stop traffic while bleary-eyed commuters sped down the highway in the dark. We neighbors could have helped him, sure, but we don’t wield the same authority as a heat-packing officer of the law. And blue lights help immeasurably to waken sleepy drivers.
I got to thinking about how many unpleasant jobs fall to our men and women in blue. Or black, or whatever color it is. I’d hate having to walk in on a domestic dispute. Or tell a scared parent their son is locked up. Or knock on a window and ask for license and registration.
Just like George Bailey discovered how valuable he was to his community, I wonder how different our lives would look without the faithful presence of our police officers. I wonder how long it would take for society to degenerate.
So thank you, officers. Thank you for choosing a difficult job that’s uncertain and often unwelcomed.
Thank you for getting out in the wee hours to help that stranded motorist or stop that drunken menace.
Thank you for leaving your families and heading into danger so we can enjoy our families in safety.
Every normal day and peaceful night we enjoy is made possible because of your daily courage and nightly sleeplessness. Thank you, and may God bless you.
If you’d like to join me in praying for our peace officers as well as our president, governors, commissioners, pastors, bosses, leaders, and husbands, here’s an excellent list to help. You can download a copy of these here. You can also find other free resources at http://www.ifapray.org/.
1. That they be God-fearing and recognize that they are accountable to Him for each decision and act. (Proverbs 9:10)
2. That they be granted wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. (James 1:5)
3. That they be presented with the gospel and a loving Christian witness. (Romans 10:14)
4. That, if unsaved, they be drawn to a saving encounter with Christ; if born-again, that they be strengthened and encouraged in their faith. (1 Timothy 2:4, Ephesians 1:17-23)
5. That they recognize their own inadequacy and pray and seek the will of God. (Proverbs 3:5-8, Luke 11:9-13)
6. That they be convicted of sin, transgression, and iniquity. (Psalm 51:17, John 8:9)
7. That they heed their conscience, confess their sins and repent. (Proverbs 28:13, James 4:8)
8. That they read the Bible and attend prayer meetings and Bible studies. (Psalms 119:11, Colossians 3:2)
9. That they value and regard the Ten Commandments and the teachings of Christ. (Psalm 19:7-11, John 8:31-32)
10. That they respect and honor their own parents if living. (Ephesians 6:2-3)
11. That they respect authority and practice accountability. (Romans 13:1-7)
12. That they be given godly counsel and God-fearing advisors. (Proverbs 24:6)
13. That they be honest and faithful to spouses and children. (Malachi 2:15-16)
14. That they be practicing members of local congregations. (Hebrews 10:25)
15. That they desire purity and avoid debauchery, pornography, perversion and drunkenness. (1 Corinthians 6:9-20, Titus 2:12)
16. That they be timely, reliable and dependable. (Matthew 21:28-31)
17. That they be honest in financial, tax and ethical matters. (1 Corinthians 6:10, 1 Timothy 6:6-10)
18. That they seek pastoral care and counsel when needed. (Hebrews 13:7)
19. That they seek out and nurture godly friendships. (Psalms 1:1-3)
20. That they have thankful and teachable spirits. (Romans 1:21)
21. That they be generous and have compassionate hearts for the poor and needy. (Psalm 112:9, Luke 10:33-37)
22. That they redeem their time and know priorities. (Ephesians 5:15-17)
23. That they desire honesty, integrity, and loyalty. (Psalm 26, Proverbs 11:3)
24. That they have courage to resist manipulation, pressure and the fear of man. (Proverbs 29:25, 2 Timothy 1:7)
25. That they be shielded from occultism, New Age cults, false religions, and secret societies. (Isaiah 1:29, 2:6)
26. That they be presented with biblical worldviews and principles. (Ephesians 3:10)
27. That they endeavor to restore the sanctity of life, families, divine order and morality in our nation. (Ephesians 5:22-6:4)
28. That they would work to reverse the trends of humanism in our nation. (1 Chronicles 12:32, Isaiah 59:19)
29. That they desire humility and meekness and be willing to serve and cooperate. (John 13:14, Titus 3:1-2)
30. That they be prepared to give an account to Almighty God. (Hebrews 9:27)