Sunday Prayers

Help my fear, Lord, and my unbelief. Help me to learn your goodness by heart. Help me, Lord, in the midst of my doubts and worries, to begin to see what you see when you look at my world. Imprint that vision somewhere deep within where it can stay, and speak and live. Amen (Help, me Lord from Celtic Daily Prayer: Book Two, 1041)

Lord Jesus, you taught us to pray. Now help us pray for our daily bread while laboring with love for those who hunger. Show us how to hallow your name while striving for justice in our relationships and in society. May our whole lives become a prayer, ever to your glory. Amen (Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals, 441)

God, I walk with you, yielding my life to your will. Deliver us from the things that distract us from you. Free us from the chaos that so easily enters this world. Heal our pain, sadness and disappointment. Help us set our gaze upon you and to receive your grace, mercy and peace. May we reflect your goodness in the world and live as people of light, life and love. Amen (My Prayer)

Caring for Words

My dear brothers and sisters, understand this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak.- James 1:19

It was said about Abba Agathon that for three years he carried a pebble around in his mouth until he learned to be silent. – From Desert Wisdom: Sayings From the Desert Fathers

A word with power is a word that comes out of silence. A word that bears fruit is a word that emerges from the silence and returns to it. -Henri Nouwen, The Way of the Heart

In the age of social media there are a lot of words being used, sometimes for good and sometimes to the detriment of a whole nation. Words are important, and we should learn to care for words. However, we should first reflect on silence and listening before strategizing about loving and using words. I think active and attentive listening is a primary language of loving others well and of effective communication. We listen by first being silent, and we learn to be silent in the silence and solitude with God. How do we care for words? By entering the silence. By learning to be silent. By speaking and writing out of the silence on what we have heard, experienced and learned in the silence.