Prayers for Those Who Mourn

The prevalence of violence in our communities concerns me deeply. We respond with medical care, social services and legal advice. Perhaps we have missed the most important source of healing;  caring for the spirit.

After losing my partner of 34 years in a traumatic event, these prayers emerged over the course of a year as I identified movements (in bold) in my own spirit.

Spiritual Care after Trauma

Healing One, who moves slowly in all that is eternal,It takes days for grief to unfold, and so often we try to escape it. Use these silent moments to let the light of God’s presence shine into our depths. Whether we find confusion or anger or perhaps a firm resolve for living, it is better for these to come forth than to remain hidden. Make each slow breath an opening to remove our inner division and reunite our being. Grief is not taken away but is relieved when shared, and transformed through relationship in community.  Help us to find one another in the sharing and unfolding. And, then, when we reach the heart of our experience, find there  the power of Loving Presence that holds us all. Amen.

 

Staying Present to What Is

Unknown Being, who creates and gives life,How is it that the dawn’s last deep sigh opens this morning’s light? There is no pausing to take a breath, no learning to breathe, nor forgetting to breathe, only the constancy of the One giving and receiving breath. Just wait, just watch for it. When it seems there is no hope, there is in reality more Presence than we can take in. The shattering of our hearts is not to be feared. Those deep sighs coming from our depths, are already initiating the opening for the new day.  Just wait, just watch for it. Amen.

 

Slowing Down in Grief

Creator of All, who gives us life beyond our knowing,
Open us to the steadiness of your Presence, breathe in us a sense of strength and peace, for we trust your ways are good and your love is unending. In all that is ahead,  slow us down, slow us down, slow us down that we might notice you first and allow you to guide our hearts and minds. Grow your love in us anew. This is the day the Lord has made, let us wait in hope, have patience in trouble and pray at all times.[i]Amen.

[i]Romans 12:12, my husband, Paul’s life verse.

Loss of Confidence in God’s Love for Us

Oh God, Unknown One, whose creation desperately needs redemption
Nothing makes any sense. We are not taking a breath, every cell in our bodies anxious with furious vibration, broken bones and torn flesh, every thought numbed. Lead us through this arid wilderness. Can the lost be found? Can the afflicted be comforted or the proud be convicted? Can we be sustained by your promise?
Redeem the images seared in our memories. Create in us new space to be filled by your love alone.  Embroider the names of victims on our hearts and in our minds until compassion brings us to new places of hope. Amen.

 

Loss of Confidence in Our Love for God

Eternal Companion, who is somehow amongst and within me,
I wake with a sense of dread, and  walk through the day with the sense of being devoured by cruel currents. I admit that I am unsure if I can love you. Guide me in this struggle.  Help me admit that I am empty and unfinished. Rather than allowing my circumstances to build walls, break down my resistance until understanding widens into ways of deliverance and peace.  Remind me to persevere in the one relationship that helps me to navigate all the rest. Amen.

 

Willingness to Accept the Unknown 

 Isaiah 42:16

I will lead the blind
by a road they do not know,
by paths they have not known
I will guide them.
I will turn the darkness before them into light,
the rough places into level ground.
These are the things I will do,
and I will not forsake them.

 

Emerging Compassion

Loving God, who calls us to follow in faith,
We pause to breathe in your limitless beauty offered in this day, and are reminded of the ways you provide for our comfort and peace. Keep us from complacency and give us courage to follow you, in all times and places, places of joy and light as well as places  of darkness and challenge. Knowing that we don’t travel alone,  help us realize that each faithful step takes us to our true home, where our meaning and purpose for living is revealed. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Holding Hands

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Designer of Hope, who embraces  all those with tear-filled eyes,
Turn our tears of joy into courage,  and our tears of sorrow into compassion; for in this new day lie all the possibilities for tomorrow. Steer us toward the roads of the future with those close enough to hold our hands. Surprise us again with eternal treasure as we give away that which sustains another. Remind us that we don’t  travel through this day alone, the arms of your love holds us all. Amen.

“…. And surely,  I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”        Matthew 28:20

 

A Simple Valentine

Paul's rosebud

Divine Promise,
who generates strength within and amongst us,
Your Presence permeates the air we breathe, effortless on our part. You deliver us through a myriad of daily choices, some of which are less than faithful and still you bring forth beauty from our flaws. May our focus be on Love this day, assured only with your capacity to heal and restore every life in yours. Amen.

 

Mysterious Brightness

light in all directions

Luminous Presence, whose face reflects light in all directions,
We wake and pause to take in the mysterious brightness of your creation.
In this new day, with its unseen possibilities, order our lives. Provoke your mercy and peace to bring our weary souls relief from the error of our ways. Shine your love amongst us, stirring comfort into the hearts of all who need healing and hope so that your image can be established, throughout our world. Amen.

Fleeting Moments

Fleeting moments

Gentle Healer , who brings us to places of nurture and comfort,
This morning begins again with grief, when tears come before the breath. We hear your Presence in ordinary sounds of life. The water running, a door opening,, even the slow chirp of September’s crickets remind us of our fleeting existence. Keep teaching us that rather than grasping too tightly, we really need to allow you to hold onto us. Sometimes all we can do is rest and let your Presence restore our joy. Amen.

Traveler’s Prayer

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Pathmaker of Peace, who longs to travel with us. We pause in the midst of activity to consider your yearning for us. Even when the roads are difficult, we are filled with gratitude for the blessing of hope in chance encounters. Along hurried paths, there are holy hearts that guide, encourage and heal contributing to all that makes us whole. So, let us not travel too fast rather let the expectant heart of the pilgrim arise within ready to receive you with wonder. Amen.

Breathe.

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Merciful One, who hears the cries of our suffering creation,
There are no words, only deep sighs. (deep sigh) We breathe in your loving power that overcomes all fear. (deep sigh) We breathe in your Self-giving nature that transforms all disorder. (deep sigh) We breathe in your redeeming Presence now. Soak our hearts and minds with all that establishes sincere communities ready to seriously look to the needs of others rather than striving after our own security and desire. Remind us once again that we live under your cross, not above it. Amen.