In Spring the world wakes up with song and color. There is a manic call to CREATE!
Sometimes in this cacophony it feels impossible to be still and hear my own thoughts!
I find myself getting carried away with flights of fancy. While these are a wonderful way to energize my dreams, they can be a precarious way of life.
Help to to remember to keep my feet on the ground and BREATHE so that I am able to fully connect with you.
So be it/Amen/Thank You
So many of our hours are filled with questions about you.
“What are you? Where do you come from? Why did you create us? Did you create us? Do you even exist?”
As I begin this commitment of correspondence with you, i ask that you guide me to the truest answers to these questions.
For my part, I promise to be open to your truth knowing that there may be no simple answers.
Oh Grace, enlighten me and give me the words to inspire others.
Thank you/Amen/So Be It
I call on you to walk me through the struggle between my immediate needs and my long-term needs.
When I am tempted to complain, reliving the negativity in my life, I call on you to silence me and show me all of my life’s good.
When I am tempted to skip meals due to forgetfulness or inconvenience, I call on you to make me stop and eat!
When tempted by unhealthy food and drink, I call on you to help me choose alternatives.
Grace, remind me that immediate satisfaction is fleeting.
Only by playing the long game may I feed my soul.
Amen/So be it!
I want to thank all of you who have joined me on my Lenten Prayer adventure! One note: I realized that my Easter Prayer and my Thursday Prayer were the same. So I wrote a ‘Maundy Thursday’ prayer and updated the blog this morning. Feel free to check it out!
So where do we go from here? An excellent question! For those of you who know me personally you know that I have spoken a lot about how I feel many people are missing a spiritual practice simply because they are not religious. Weekday Spirit on FB, Insta and Twitter were created to help remind others of the joy of spirit in the mundane. I’d say that looking for ‘spirit’ everywhere is the largest part of my spiritual practice.
However, it struck me while re-posting the prayers I wrote for Lent that writing prayers makes me feel closer to spirit. So it will now be a part of my ‘practice’.
Most of what you will find in this blog will be prayers, but I do expect to write a post or two like this one on the nature of spirit and spiritual practice as opposed to ‘religion’. This post is ‘step one’.
Step One: To whom/what will I address these prayers? Above all else, I strive to create prayers that are ‘universal’. But ‘Dear Universe’ sounds too cosmic and huge to me. I feel that spirit is near when I pray. So that appellation doesn’t work for me. (But it may be the perfect word for many people reading this – so please do!)
The obvious choice is ‘Dear Spirit’. However, I can’t get beyond the connotations of ghosts, angels or fairies, who deserve to be called by their specific names. (If a prayer fits one of these entities – by all means, name them and pray the prayer to them.) The othe reason ‘Spirit’ doesn’t work for me is that I see the word as alienating for those who are agnostic – or even atheist – but still spiritual and seeking a simple practice.
So, I have arrived at ‘Dear Grace’. Here’s Miriam’s definition – http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/grace (just in case you love etymologies as much as I do:)
For me Grace defines the respect, gratitude, and love that I have for spirit as well as the divine presence itself. Yes, there are Christian ties – Amazing Grace – but the etymology shows Latin roots, which ties the word to the Gratiae also known as the ‘Graces’. ‘Dear Grace’ also feels like starting a letter to a beloved aunt.
Today is about sacrifice.
The sacrifice made in order to cleanse our sins.
The sacrifice we make to honor you.
The word ‘sacrifice’ means ‘to make sacred.’
This is what the season of Lent is about.
We make ourselves sacred for you in honor of the greatest of miracles.
Blessings on us all as we spend a moment to remember the significance of this day.
Sometimes I spend a lot of time on wishing.
I wish for talents that I lack.
I wish for better luck in reaching goals.
I wish to be noticed or congratulated.
I wish for more money.
Lord, tonight I wish for the wisdom to count my many blessings BEFORE I ask for more.
It is in times of greatest need that we learn what matters most.
So tonight I want to thank you for the lessons I’ve learned during my darkest times.
In the hardest moments of my life I have seen what a gift the most basic kindness can be.
May I always remember this Lord and offer the same kindness when I see others struggling with loss and even fear of loss.
Tonight my thoughts turn to why it is that I so often feel as if I’ll never have enough material wealth to feel secure.
It comes like a gnawing at my stomach when presented with a bill, particularly unexpected bills.
It comes when I look around my home and see only what needs to be fixed or made larger or changed altogether.
It comes when I speak to my friends or family and only see what is missing in our relationships.
It comes from fear, Lord. This feeling of never having enough. I know it comes from fear.
But I don’t always know how to stop it.
Lead me Lord, when the fear sets in. Help me find peace in the knowledge that you will never give me more than I can handle.
Today I was reminded of the importance of empathy.
Not sympathy, where we offer condolences and move on, but empathy, where we actually feel what our fellows are feeling.
It is an important component to service and one that I know I could work on.
Is empathy what you were creating when you sent your only son to live among your people?
Maybe there is a certain godliness in walking in another person’s shoes before we judge where they’ve been.
May I always remember this, Lord.
I know that there is a time for all things and that patience is a virtue.
So why is it that I waste so much energy on frustration with waiting?
Why am I often so intent on rushing things? Or so irritated when others slow me down?
Why do I spend time wishing it would move faster.
Perhaps this is another lesson that Lent teaches. The lesson of patience is an important one.
Please guide me to a more patient self, Lord.