Father God: You are truth. And you have called us as journalists to a profoundly important task. To tell the truth. But to do that, we must find it. And as we pursue it, it comes in many parts.
One group tells us one thing. Another, just the opposite, another something else. Give us the wisdom and understanding and skill to know which parts are true… and then to put the right parts together in the right order. As we do our jobs, we are often manipulated, misled, managed and maligned. May we not be discouraged. Gift us with patience, guide us with common sense, guard us from pessimism.
Help us to be a voice for the voiceless… To be skeptical but never cynical… Righteously angry at the wrongs we expose, but never revengeful. Keep our hearts from despair and give us the courage and steadfastness to go to places and ask the questions and shine the light that our readers and viewers need to make sense of this all-too-fallen world. Keep us safe from harm as we do our jobs.
But may we also realize that in doing our jobs, we often cause harm. Make us humbly aware of the power of words and pictures and help us to choose them carefully, always seeking to minimize harm, never exploiting the facts, slanting the story or preconceiving our prejudices to push a personal agenda. May we admit and correct our mistakes promptly, learning from them.
But O God, may we especially realize that all news is not bad news. That love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control – what your word calls the fruit of your spirit – are all around us and part of the Good News we are also responsible to tell. May our reports inform, not inflame. May they encourage not discourage.
May we be sensitive instead of sensationalistic… Reflect reason not ridicule… Be balanced not bitter. May the words we write and the images we display describe not distort. Help us to educate and to even entertain… but never to entice.
May our power never be tainted by our pride. May we understand that it is more important to be fair than first… That respect is more important than ratings and that truthfulness and honesty and compassion and integrity are the traits that we must pursue in ourselves as much and as rigorously as we do in others.
To be the journalists you have called us to be, I pray, Father, in the newsrooms and TV stations and radio studios and editing suites of this land, that you would impress on each one of us that there is an Absolute, Unchanging Truth with a capital T that we need to open our hearts to hear.
May you plant Your Truth in us so that we can then tell it to others. Finally Father, may we daily be reminded that with great power comes great responsibility. May we please you in the way we exercise it.
We pray this in the strong name of your Son, Jesus Christ, who is the Truth, The Life and The Way. Amen.