A Good Friday Meditation…
Shock Me with Terrible Goodness
Shock and save me with the terrible goodness of this Friday,
And drive me deep into my longing for your kingdom
Until I seek it first-
Yet not first for myself,
But for the hungry
And the sick
And the poor of your children,
For prisoners of conscience around the world,
For those I have wasted
With my racism
For those around this mother earth and in this city
Who, this Friday, know far more of terror than of goodness;
That, in my seeking first the kingdom,
For them as well as for myself,
All these things may be mine as well:
Things like a coat and courage
And something like comfort,
A few lilies in the field,
The sight of birds soaring on the wind,
A song in the night,
And gladness of heart,
The sense of your presence
And the realization of your promise
That nothing in life or death
Will be able to separate me or those I love,
From you love
In the crucified one who is our Lord,
And in whose name and Spirit I pray.
by Ted Loder – Guerrillas of Grace
As we take our first steps out of the darkness that eclipsed with the Winter Solstice, we experience how nature continues to direct our rhythms and remind us of new life sprouting from the darkness.
I don’t know about you, but I have received my word for 2019 This word, or thought, will become my guide and constant reminder this year. It will help me stay on track, say yes to the right things, and no to the wrong things.
Mostly, it reminds me that no matter what may happen, I am co-creating my life with God which deserves my passionate attention.
My prayer to launch the year is from Ted Loder. It’s real, beautiful, painful and an invitation to journey outside the God-box so many live in. I feel like it describes where I have been and where I long to go. May it speak to your soul as it does mine.
God of history and my heart,
so much has happened to me during these whirlwind days:
I’ve known death and birth;
I’ve been brave and scared;
I’ve hurt, I’ve helped;
I’ve been honest, I’ve lied;
I’ve destroyed, I’ve created;
I’ve been with people, I’ve been lonely;
I’ve been loyal, I’ve betrayed;
I’ve decided, I’ve waffled;
I’ve laughed, I’ve cried.
You know my frail heart and my frayed history–
and now another day begins.
O God, help me to believe in beginnings
and in my beginning again,
no matter how often I’ve failed before.
Help me to make beginnings:
to begin going out of my weary mind into fresh dreams,
daring to make my own bold tracks in the land of now;
to begin forgiving
that I may experience mercy;
to begin questioning the unquestionable
that I may know
to begin disciplining
that I may create beauty;
to begin sacrificing
that I may accomplish justice;
to begin risking
that I may make peace;
to begin loving
that I may realize joy.
Help me to be a beginning for others,
to be a singer to the songless,
a storyteller to the aimless,
a befriender of the friendless;
to become a beginning of hope for the despairing,
of assurance for the doubting,
of reconciliation for the divided;
to become a beginning of freedom for the oppressed,
of comfort for the sorrowing,
of friendship for the forgotten;
to become a beginning of beauty for the forlorn,
of sweetness for the soured,
of gentleness for the angry,
of wholeness for the broken,
of peace for the frightened and violent of the earth.
Help me to believe in beginnings,
to make a beginning,
to be a beginning,
so that I may not just grow old,
but grow new
each day of this wild, amazing life
you call me to live
with the passion of Jesus Christ.
I just found a quiet space to think, ponder and pray.
I’ve turned off the news…turned off my phone…and am trying to turn off my busy mind.
As I settled in to pray, I read a prayer by Ted Loder to center my tired soul.
I felt the refreshing Spirit fall as I was reminded to loosen my grip.
If your grip has been too tight, take a moment and pray it too…
Loosen My Grip-Ted Loder
O God, it is hard for me to let go,
and the squeeze I exert
garbles me and gnarls others.
So, loosen my grip a bit
on the good times,
on the moments of sunlight and star shine and joy,
that the thousand graces they scatter as they pass
may nurture growth in me
rather than turn to brittle memories.
Loosen my grip
on those grudges and grievances
I hold so closely,
that I may risk exposing myself
to the spirit of forgiveness
that changes things and resurrects dreams and courage.
Loosen my grip
on my fears
that I may be released a little into humility
and into an acceptance of my humanity.
Loosen my grip
that I may experience the freedom of a fool
who knows that to believe
is to see kingdoms, find power, sense glory;
to reach out
is to know myself held;
to laugh at myself
is to be in on the joke of your grace;
to attend to each moment
is to hear the faint melody of eternity;
to dare love
is to smell the wild flowers of heaven.
Loosen my grip
on my ways and words,
on my fears and fretfulness
that letting go
into the depths of silence
and my own uncharted longings,
I may find myself held by you
and linked anew to all life
in this wild and wonderous world
you love so much,
so I may take to heart
that you have taken me to heart.