Dear worried Third Church Friends,
OK, it seems like I spend half my life writing stuff these days. Good thing I like to pound on my keyboard. However, as my Wednesday deadline approached, I had nothing in my Z-Notes file. I had just finished the prayers I offered for our virtual prayer gathering the day after Election Day. Not all of you participated in that, so…I share my closing prayer from that gathering. I fully expect that it will still speak to our situation on Thursday morning as well.
Patient God, we have paused…and pleaded…and poured out our hearts and thoughts to you this day. We pray that you will reward us with the ability to stand up and step away from the frequently-furious fray, so that we may keep our eyes focused on you. Bless us also with an enhanced ability to imagine and appreciate the views of others, especially when they differ from our own—which they often do. Guide us as we consider how we may be uniters rather than dividers, embracers rather than wall-builders, problem-solvers rather than issue-creators.
We pray these things, Lord, not because they are easily accomplished, but rather because they seem at the present time to be slightly or considerably beyond our grasp. So…give us long, elastic arms, that we may reach beyond our physical, social, political, and emotional limitations, to include people and perspectives that stretch us, challenge us, and even anger us, in our efforts to be Christ-like examples of love and acceptance in this broken and divided world. We trust and expect that you will work in and through us, in ways that may surprise and shock us, as we envision, engender, and encourage the return and growth of the good community to which we all aspire.
Help us, Lord, to be patient if our prayers seem not be answered and effective this week. Like everything that we value, bless us with the willingness to stick with it over the long haul, until something more resembling your Kin-dom comes on earth as it is in heaven; to the praise and honor and glory of your most holy Name. Amen.
Office: 585-271-6513, ext. 105; Cell: 618-606-1053 (after hours; emergencies)