As Congress returned to session Tuesday, Pastor Andrew Brunson delivered the opening prayer in the U.S. Senate chambers.
Before his prayer, Brunson, a pastor from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, thanked senators for helping secure his release.
"Before I pray, I want to thank the Senate. I'm standing here today because so many of you fought for me and I am deeply grateful. In a time of many divides, you were unified fighting for my release. Thank you."
Then Brunson prayed.
"Our heavenly Father: May Your holy name be honored. May Your name be held in high regard in this Senate. We give thanks to You, for You are good. And Your steadfast love endures forever. You have watched over this nation in various times of peace, prosperity, turmoil and war. May we continue to look to You and be a people who seek Your face.
"Draw us near and may we draw near to You. Blessed is a nation whose God is the Lord. Reveal to us our sins and forgive us. Reveal to us also Your love. And enable each of us to love You with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength. Today, I pray that You grant to the senators of the United States the spirit of wisdom, the fear of the Lord and the courage to act by the counsel of the Lord in all matters great and small.
"May they have Your perspective on all things. May Your kingdom come and Your will be done, here in our nation as it is in heaven in and through these senators. Bless their families and their health. Give them Your peace. O God, fill this place with Your presence and unite us as one nation under your leadership—indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen."
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