I am praying for you. I have watched you over the years, and seen the sadness in your eyes sometimes. The downward slope of your shoulders and slight roll in your back, head tilted forward ever-so slightly. Not always of course. At other times your eyes truly sparkle with enthusiasm and even mischief. That child-like sense of awe at the beauty and mystery and fun of life just flows from you. “What are you thinking,” I wonder.
I pray for a knowing of sufficient depth that you have a safe space to share these things – your hopes and your burdens. What is it you seek, in the darkness and in the light? The same things, most likely – a home and hope; hospitality. Each of us needs a place of belonging, perhaps several, where we are known AND loved. Always understood and liked? Perhaps not. But always loved and welcome. One could argue that family is meant to provide that space – the dream often exceeds the waking reality. And what of those who have no family of which they might speak – what then? Where will this ‘community of knowing in common’ be? I pray that you form it and find it.
I pray for emerging awareness of your blessedness. Before action or even intention, as you simply present yourself to the world, know that you are precious to God and a source of divine pleasure and delight. I know you have stumbled a time or two – who among us hasn’t. God’s attention is elsewhere – focus is drawn in on YOUR Imago Dei – the Image-of-God in YOU. With the imagination and power to create, to bring order and form from chaos. The ability to name and thereby take responsibility. The ability to precede that which is about to be revealed – to ‘exist before’. And the ability to exist after, to out live, to survive. In all
of this, you are sacred, holy, blessed.
I pray for you renewal and resurrection. We have been corrupted, each of us; we are decaying as cloth in the sun or metal in water. God extends to us restoration and reconciliation with self, world, and God. “Be made clean!” “Rise up!” “Be healed!” “You are forgiven!” I pray that you hear these words spoken to you, for you, and through you to your world. Yes, there is entropy at work in you. Even so, God speaks to that which seems as good as dead, and says, “LIVE!” God says to you, “Live!”
I pray for you the Way of Jesus as your way. This way is not easy, in the conventional sense. It does not permit leisurely days after sleeping in. You will find challenge and struggle on this path. But then, what path is free of these? Is not all life fraught with difficulty and danger? The difference being in Christ our struggles become prayer. They become a means for us to enter into deeper communion with God – not by God’s design and purposing, but by God’s mercy and grace. God would certainly prefer that things were easier, but since they are not, God meets us in the valley of the shadow of death and shepherds us through, feeding us with plenty as we go. You will be called to die to self, so that you may truly live with Christ and as Christ in the world.
I pray for you eternal life, which is to know God, and the True and Living Way in the world. To know God is to live free. If you think you know God, but hate people, then you are wrong, and do not have life. If you think you know God, and think you are with out error, then you are wrong, and do not have life. If you think you know God, and possess great knowledge and insight, but let your neighbor suffer when you have the means to help, then you are wrong, and do not have life. To have life is to Love All of God with all of you, and to love God’s whole creation equally and fully. I pray for you eternal life.