God, thank you for the way Lent
captures unintentional selfies —
not my face in tourist scenery
to be remembered
or registering (boasting) my presence
at an event —
but showing the shadow of me
against my surroundings
and the door into my inner self.

Sometimes it shows my heart
made of intricate knots —

fear of the novel coronavirus,
guilt at my complicity
in the destruction of the environment
and many other injustices,
grief at the loss of dear friends,
worry for the decision-making of others,
wonder at a new birth,
tenderness at a new romance,
fear (again) at the opioid epidemic
and the knowledge that washing our hands
will not be the answer there.

Thank you for this season
of the unintentional selfie
on the way to living an intentional life. amen.


Maren C. Tirabassi was only hoping to capture the church-lady macramé heart hanging on the door when she returned with a new baby 37 years ago. Her most recent book with Maria Mankin (who was/still is that child) is A Child Laughs: Prayers of Justice and Hope and she blogs at http://giftsinopenands@wordpress.com/ She’s a United Church of Christ pastor and a writer.


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