Dearest Friend and Great I AM,

Today I pray for your boldest ones.
Your beloved ones, your strong ones,
The ones you have created and called,
Plucked out and set up front,
Gifted with story and strategy,
Fierce proclamation and radical witness.

Those wild faithful who make the first moves,
Say the first hard things,
Whip the way clear,
Who nudge the rest of us,
Who speak out and share big,
March long and organize deep,
And inspire us to follow.

In a time such as this,
We are chewing up your prophets.
We are wearing out your reformers.
We are draining dry your artists.
We are beating down your true leaders.

I’m watching them drop,
With weariness,
In grief,
With wounds and scars and very bad dreams.
I am listening to them burn and weep.

I know there is much,
I can’t imagine the cries your ears must hold,
But, O Wonderful God,
I pray for your children doing this work,
Leading us toward your justice,
Giving of themselves for your community,
Sharing with us all of the all you’ve given them.

And, if I can be so ridiculous as to ask,
To pray,
Could you give them a little more?
More rest,
More support,
More breaks,
More peace,
More love.

A little more,
Not to fill them back up and send them back out,
Not because we need them and want them,
(and want to use them),
But a little more,
So they might be well.
So they might feel whole.
So they might release, just a bit.
So they might breathe… deeply and completely.

That all may feel and know your freedom and love.
That all may experience your liberation and peace.



The Rev. Erin Counihan serves as pastor at Oak Hill Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) in St  Louis, Mo.

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