It’s been a strange time, God. I’ve lost track now of guidelines and rules. The online access to my vaccine record generates an error message. I have nothing to print and laminate. I am forgetting to mask not because I want to make a point, but because I’m 65 and just wearing down a little more each week. I don’t go to worship because the risk still feels too high for me. But in making that choice I also feel something’s shifted inside. Worship seems like a long-ago thing but not just that. There is a feeling within that is less about missing all the great stuff about live worship (which I do miss) and more about an unease about it being what You actually want. All those Bible passages where you challenge the worship your people offer because their living every day contradicts what we proclaim—I feel urgency gathering there. All those stories have moved closer to my life and my sense of collective faith and ministry and witness. But how I love so much of who we’ve been together. How I miss singing our hymns and feeling opened up for all to know that what really makes me tick is…You. Yet. This pause from all of it. This revealing of how little my community felt the absence of our busyness and the impact of our closed doors—this is haunting me. Help us want to be your presence so our communities and the world know that the power of your love at work is the promise of ours, the direction of justice is the path we will choose, and the humility of your incarnate presence in Jesus is the possibility for us to begin again. Something like that, O Wondrous God of all that is now and ever was? O Spirit who searched me out and whispered in my dreams? O Jesus who created a story of your purpose that I could be in and called me to it? Something like that? Yes. With you. Something like that. Amen.
Diane Strickland is in her 33rd year as an ordained minister now serving in The United Church of Canada as retired clergy. She is a Certified Community and Workplace Traumatologist, Compassion Fatigue Specialist-Therapist, and Critical Incident Responder, author and creator of trauma informed resources.
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2 thoughts on “Monday Prayer: October 11, 2021”
Blessings surround you for the honesty and hope of this prayer.
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I was packing up books for moving yesterday and was surprised to see little tags on so many pages of one book. I stopped and let myself know again why it had fed me so often. “An Improbable Gift of Blessing.” It was yours and Joan’s book. Courage and inspiration then and now. Thank you.