Your bright, compassionate eyes look kindly on all who ask You for grace and mercy, in love. Blessed be Your eyes, eyelids and wonderful eyebrows! May Your lovely, kind vision be praised forever. Amen.
Birgitta of Sweden in Incandescence (Butcher, 2005)
To be fair, I have never considered your eyebrows,
nor your intestines.
So very ordinary,
the details that make you fully human,
with a body and all the organs and tissues,
fluids and fibres,
that make us what we are.
Help me not to abstract you
out of existence;
help me to love you,
eyebrows and intestines and all.
As you became human like us,
help me to become more like you:
looking at our world
with love and kindness,
hungry for a world
of justice and goodness,
living a life shaped
by grace and mercy.
In your name I pray.
Jemma Allen is a priest in the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia. Her ministry is currently both in a parish where she works with children and young people and as a counsellor and spiritual director in private practice.
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