This week the world watched as American troops left the longest war in American history.

For 17 days American military executed the largest air lift evacuation in US history in the face of certain danger, as Taliban took control of Afghanistan once again.

On August 26th, two suicide bombers and gunmen attacked the Kabul airport where desperate and scared men, women, and children fought to get to airplanes leaving the country.

As a result of these attacks 11 US marines, one Navy medic, and one Army soldier were killed. 18 troops were wounded.

Sixty Afghans were killed and an estimated 120 were wounded. We will likely never know their names. We know the names of the Americans who were killed. We can say them and pray for them and their families.

We do not know the names of the Afghans who were killed or the ones who will be killed under Taliban rule. We don’t know the names of young girls and boys who will live a different life under Taliban rule. The only thing we can do is pray. This is what we can do.

Father in Heaven,

You love the people of America and You love the people of Afghanistan. You know the names of every person who took their last breath within the gates of the Hamid Karzai International Airport and those who met death on their way there. Lord, You know the names of every person who loved them and feels the loss of them. Lord, You know who is mourning and grieving today. Cover them with Your perfect peace.

Let not another second pass without them feeling a bit of Your grace, peace, and love on this, Your Sabbath.

Forgive us for our sins, Lord, so we can forgive others and together move toward good. You will make all things good. Help us do our part to bring Your goodness to the earth. Those who are left in Afghanistan, Lord, bring good from their losses. Draw out hope from their fear. Those who left their homeland to find safety in new homes and new countries, Lord, help them to find safety. Help them to find the best of us here.

I ask a blessing on everyone who has reached out a supportive hand toward the refugees. I ask a blessing on everyone who put themselves in harm’s way to get them out of that dangerous situation. These people, agencies, and organizations do thankless work. I and so many others are thankful for the work they do.

Lord, be with the soldiers who have fought in this now finished war. Many of them feel their work and loss was for nothing after all was said and done. I know You will use their sacrifices for good in the end. I know You will redeem the broken hearts and broken bodies that resulted from their work in Afghanistan and beyond.

Only You, Lord, see the end and the beginning. Things seem at their worst, but I know You will make them all new. I want to see it.

In times like these I am at a loss for words. Give me the words when I’m not sure how to pray for such brokenness. Give me the strength when I’m weakened by the news. Give me hope that I might share it with someone.

In Jesus’ Name I pray and ask and hope,