Apr 212013
 

thumbnail.aspxWe pray as often as we meet,
that we might “perfectly love you.”
Indeed, we have been commanded from the beginning,
to love you with all our hearts and
all our souls and
all our minds and
all our strength.

We have pledged to love,
pledged in our prayers and in our baptism,
in our confirmation and with our best resolve.

 

But we confess . . .
we love you imperfectly;
we love you with a divded heart,
with a thousand other loves
that are more compelling
with reservation and qualification,
and passion withheld and
devotion impaired.

We do not now come to pretend before you,
but to confess that we do not,
as we are,
love you perfectly;
we do not keep your commands;
we do not order our lives by your purpose;
we do not tilt toward you as our deepest affection.

But we would . . .
we would love you more perfectly,
by the taste of bread become your flesh,
by the swallow of wime become your blood,
by the praise of our lips and beyond our usual reasoning,
by the commandments that are not burden but joy to us,
by embracing your passion for neighbors,
by your ways of justice and peace and mercy,
by honoring the world you have made
and all creatures great and small,
by self-care that knows you as our creator.

Lead us past our shabby compromises
and our cheap devotion;
lead us into singleness of vision
and purity of heart,
that we may will one thing,
and answer back in love to your great love to us.

Free us from idolatries
and out habits of recalcitrance
tender our hearts,
gentle our lips,
open our hands,
that we may turn toward you fully
toward your world unguardedly.

Let us bask in your freedom
to be fully yours, and
so trusting fully our own.
We pray through the Lord Jesus who loved you
singularly, perfectly, fully—to the end.

Walter Brueggemann

  23 Responses to “Prayer & Praise”

  1. Would really like some to pray that spring will come to my part of the country. For 3 weeks running we have had a snowstorm close to the beginning of the week, with liberal snow in between. It looks like another 10 possible inches tonight. Now our part of the country really needs moisture (drought), but would really like to see it as rain.
    This winter is really starting to get me and my wife down and depressed.
    Thank you!

  2. I can relate to that Derek. This past week was the first week we had some “spring” weather after 5 longs months. May the Son shine joy into your hearts today.

  3. Nonnie, it teased us here. We had about 2 weeks of spring weather and then back to winter. 🙁

  4. Derek….. praying for the joy of Spring to envelope your area….. sunshine is so healing.

  5. I pray for what’s best for farmers not city dwellers.

  6. Derek, Praying.

  7. mrtundraman, Please limit your snark to the other threads.

  8. jlo – not snark at all. Not in the least. I don’t pray for clear weather when I know that farmers depend upon rain. I don’t even read the Scripture “God causes it to rain on the just and the unjust” as a city dweller would. They see rain as a bad thing. I see rain as a blessing in that passage.

    No snark…

  9. Derek,

    Snow storms are really starting to mess with my job. My pre-summer PM work on some 400 roof top units has been stalled this month due to cold temps and snow. It is impossible to do cooling checks when every RTU is heating buildings. It made for a really bad week last week. 50 hours at work waiting around for a grand total of 25 hours of service calls. That does not pay the bills.

    I would like summer. Now.

  10. Reuben,
    You need prayers for spring and summer more than me. It is just depressing me, at least it isn’t messing with my paycheck. Praying for you.
    Great, just looked out the window. The snow has begun. I would love some rain and thundershowers. I am actually looking forward to the fact that moving back South will mean less snow and more thunder and lightning.

  11. mrtundraman, then please forive me.

  12. mtm,
    is your prayer more acceptable to God because it is farmer-driven?
    Perhaps there is a best-seller in your future…The Farmer-Driven (prayer) Life.

  13. Derek….praying for you here as well. Here in TN we had more rain in the month of March than I think we ever had…grey and gloomy days. I love rain…but the grey was bearing down on all of us. Thankful for some sunshine, although now I can complain about the allergies! Praying for you and your wife…for joy to great you in the morning.

    Reuben…praying for you as well…for the weather and the work.

  14. “mtm,
    is your prayer more acceptable to God because it is farmer-driven?”

    If God calls precipitation a blessing then who am I to call it a curse?

  15. mtm,
    what if “rain on the just and unjust alike” refers to trouble or trial?

  16. Thanks for the prayers. We got about a foot (a record month of snow for Rapid City), but it is all off the road now and they are saying temps in the 70’s by the weekend. Maybe it will be spring and rain from now on. 🙂

  17. “mtm,
    what if “rain on the just and unjust alike” refers to trouble or trial?”

    Then it says something about the theology of the person who believes that. Besides, it’s undeniable from the context that it’s not about God doing bad things to good people but about God blessing people who do evil…

    Mat 5:45-47
    That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
    For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
    And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?

  18. thanks, mtm, that was a pleasant exchange.

  19. Being a city dweller myself, I used to think that rain was a bummer since i found it inconvenient for my plans. Then I went to visit some CC missionary friends in Mexico. They have a ranch with cattle on it. One day we were going to go out and work the cows but it was raining. I complained to my rancher/missionary friends and my missionary friend kindly let me know that the bit of rain I found inconvenient was probably worth several thousands of dollars to him in “free” feed for his cows.

    I repented of my bad heart and bad theology after I revisited the verse that I thought I once understood. Reading the context i learned that I totally misunderstood the passage and didn’t get the heart of Jesus right either.

    Now he and I never agreed about crows. He was a big fan, but I never appreciated them mocking me 🙂

  20. Keep reading into chapter 7 of that same sermon and it seems Jesus gives a different take on rain….

    at least too much of it. 😉

  21. Steve, It’s only an issue if you believe in the CC notion of “expositional constancy” which I find to be fallacious. For instance, “leaven” isn’t always a bad thing in Scripture. Sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s bad.

    Besides even in that passage it’s not the rain that was a problem, it was the house not being on a good foundation that was the problem. Too much of a blessing can be a curse to some.

  22. Tundra, just having fun. Did you miss the little winky?

    I’m not going to screw up the prayer thread. That’s sacred ground here.

    Just being a little lighthearted in hopes that for once there could be something besides a CC bash in return..

    Yeah, floods are great in Scripture. Too much blessing…

    Got it..

  23. Would you continue to prayer for my parent’s salvation? My Dad is on the mend after surgery, but had a couple of small strokes. Thanks…

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