The lectionary in two weeks gives us the Lucan version of the prayer that Jesus teaches his disciples. So often almost worship wallpaper, I tried writing it as questions. I was thinking about young people when I wrote it, bu it may be for all of us.
The Prayer of Our Savior in Questions
O God where are you?
Are you in heaven or here with us?
If you are here, look around – do something.
Are you “ours” or everyone’s God?
Are you as tender as a parent …
as dangerous as a parent?
How can we make your name holy
or make it holy again when it has been abused,
used to justify every kind of harm?
Where is the laundry for your name?
Why don’t we recognize your will?
How do we bring about your peaceable realm?
Can we trust you with our daily needs
and live free of planning?
Will you teach us to be forgiving …
for their sake and our sake?
How do we walk away from temptation —
one step, twelve steps?
And is ‘deliver us from evil’
the kind of delivery
that means someone is being born?
What is the future? Can you really help us?
How can we reflect your glory?
When is … forever
and what do you want us to do
with our lives now? Amen
A small portion of Reinhold Niebuhr’s prayer
God, grant us the serenity
to live with questions which may never be answered.
God, grant us the courage
to ask the profound and foolish ones,
the personal and global ones,
the ones which betray that we have done things
we ought not to have done,
and those which make us appear naïve.
God, grant us the wisdom
to share our deepest concerns with people we trust,
to avoid people who give easy answers,
and to know the difference.