Sunday, February 21, 2010

Prayer for a time of mourning

Oh God of completeness
God of wholeness
God of everywhere and everytime
All embracing God of love
God who touches the universe entire, and every particle of creation individually

When we come to times of loss in our lives
When we feel broken
When we feel abandoned or alone
When we feel separated from those we love
When we reach the limits of our ability to embrace the world, and realize with heartache and sadness that there are those who we feel are now and must remain forever beyond the extent of our grasp.

Help us to remember that no person is ever outside your grasp.
And as we exist in you, and you in all things, that we are also, always in contact with all things that are or ever were.

Today we don’t seek explanations
We don’t require philosophy or proof
Give us simply the consolation of faith
The strong embrace of love
The gentle breath of assurance
The comforting stillness of peace
The healing touch deep in our soul

And encourage us, Divine Spirit of compassion, to be the living embodiment of your universal connection as much as we are able.
We can be the consolers
We can be the embracers
We can be the assurers
We can be the peacemakers.
We can be the healers

We offer our lives, we who are blessed in so many ways, to be a blessing to others, whenever and wherever we are able.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

the present moment

God of this moment.
Divine spirit of this moment, and now new spirit of this next moment
Honored personages of fleeting time that enter and exit the world in such rapid succession.

I seek to honor you completely while you stand here.
Help me to see that there is no more important face than the one before me.
Let me trust that there is never a more important task than the one I’m engaged in.
Here is where I am called to be.
Now is the time.
Allow me the blessing of fully experiencing this holy moment of time before it vanishes.

Today is the day to care about the world as it is now.
Tomorrow it will be too late to address the suffering of today.
And today is too early to begin suffering pains that haven’t yet arrived.
Let neither remembrance of past joy nor anticipation of future joy eclipse the joy of now.

Now we live in reality.
Now we are surrounded by reality.
The future is a fantasy world, and the past is closed room.

My prayer is that each day I live that day
With gratitude and respect.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Prayer for the new year

O Time, rolling through our lives
Measured in years. Measured in decades.
But measured also in days and hours and minutes.

God of moments, and of experiences.
Divinity of fleeting thoughts and passing encounters.

Help us to honor each moment of our lives as the precious gift it is.
Help us to recognize each moment of life as one more opportunity to live out our ideals.
Forgive us quickly and compassionately for the moments we have let pass without proper attention
But steal our resolve to be more careful with the days to come.

Let this be the year that our souls come to their maturity.
Let this be the year that our souls have a growth spurt.
Let this be the year that we begin to be that person we were meant to be.

That person of worth and dignity who sees the worth and dignity in others
That person of justice and compassion
That person who accepts all others equally
That person who this year strives forward on our quest for truth and meaning
Who speaks out when our conscience is troubled, who participates in the democratic process
Who builds the world community of peace, liberty and justice for all
Who recognizes our place in the interdependent web of all existence, and who cherishes that connection and celebrates it.

May this be a year where we honor the gift given to us at our birth.
And at the end of this year, repay that gift with a year of life worthy of your generosity.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

winter solstice

Turning earth, you have brought us today to the shortest day of the year.
Your back turned to the sun, we live in slant light this morning.
The air is cold. The sky is gray.
Night is already gathering and will come upon us quickly.

Some of us, too, this morning, are feeling cold and gray.
Disappointed with ourselves and with the circumstances of the world,
we, too, have turned our backs to the sources of light and life.
Doubtful about the future, and despairing of our faith, we, too, sense a long night gathering.

But winter knows nothing of disappointment, doubt, or despair.
Winter relaxes with needed rest and gathering of resources.
The life that will bloom in April lies safe in your womb.
The snow settling on your shoulders will melt into the water we need for August.

Cherish this season to slow down and rest.
Enjoy the warmth of friends all the more for the chill outside.
Pause to name what bright possibility grows within you.
Use the quiet to gather resources that we will spend all next year.

Today we light our candles, loving the darkness.
Today we sing our carols, loving the quiet.
Today we share our gifts of abundance, loving the empty spaces of a winter landscape.
And we give thanks for all of the Earth’s times and moods and for our own changing seasons of life.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

God of our Understanding

God of our understanding
Be with us today, surrounding us, filling us,
warming our bodies, brightening our thoughts, lifting our spirits.
Where we are hurting, bring a balm of healing
Where we are fearful, bring a touch of courage
Where we are confused, bring a word of wisdom
Where our lives are chaotic, bring calm peace

We give thanks for the food on our tables
And we pray for those who will not have enough food this week
We give thanks for heated rooms and roofs over our heads
And we pray for those who will sleep outside this week.
We give thanks for friends and families every where gathering together
And we pray for those families separated by necessity or painful choice
We give thanks for all those who work to keep us safe and secure
And we pray for the end of war and all the damage that war does to ourselves and our world.

May our leaders be wise to guide us
May we be strong to do the work required.
May we know the peace of a presence larger than ourselves lifting us when we are down, celebrating our success, and being the constant witness and companion of our lives.

In all the names we give you, in all the ways we know you, and with humble bowing to the mystery that we cannot truly name or know, we reach out in trust and love, and we live in peace and joy.

Holy Spirit of Community

Holy Spirit of Community
We feel ourselves sometimes so alone, and so small
Sometimes it feels we have been left forsaken by friends, by family, by our nation, by our God,

Help us to see that this is always an illusion.
Help us to see that each one of us stands at the center of a vast community.
Help us to see that we can reach out in any direction and find hands reaching back to grasp us.
Help us to understand the truth of our seventh principle that tells us of our place in an interdependent web of all existence of which we are also a part.

We give thanks for the blessing of this community
We give thanks for the ancestors of our faith who support us from the past
We give thanks for the future of this future who encourage us from the future.
We give thanks for the loving support of the spirit of universalism that brings us all to wholeness
And we give thanks for the truth of Unitarianism, that name our personal power, and call us good and able to make our world a better place for ourselves and for all.

Unitarian and Universalist

We give thanks today for the gifts of our Unitarian faith:
That human beings are powerful and good
That we are capable of making joy in our own lives
And in changing the world around us for the better.

And we give thanks today for the gifts of our Universalist faith:
That we are upheld by an irresistible force of love
That all the universe is a single creation
And that all existence will eventually find its way to salvation.

We give thanks for a faith that affirms our power, when we feel powerful,
And that offers us comfort and strength from sources beyond our own when we’re feeling weak and afraid.

With thanks for a faith sufficient to all the times of our lives, we go forward today into our lives, equipped to live lies of peace, love, and justice, in every situation we find ourselves.

May it be so.