Prayers

I use the word 'God' conscious of the fact that there are many who may find it objectionable – and others who may find my casual use of the word too irreverent or shallow. For all sorts of reasons people can be very touchy about this word; in my view they seem either too earnest, too proprietorial, too fanatical, too averse, too phobic... There is however no ultimate authority or definition. The word is yours or mine to make of it and hold or discard it as we will…"God" as a sort of shorthand password, an inconclusive folk word, a signpost, a catalyst, a spark, a stepping stone, a simple makeshift handle ... A simple robust word used lightly and loosely or as devoutly and deeply as we might feel – a bridge, and a way to break free from this material world for a moment or two, a day or two... or for what's left of a lifetime.

God help us to change.
To change ourselves and to change our world.
To know the need for it. To deal with the pain of it.
To feel the joy of it.
To undertake the journey without understanding the destination.
The art of gentle revolution.

Amen.

Love is born.

Love is born
With a dark and troubled face
When hope is dead
And in the most unlikely place
Love is born:
Love is always born.

 Serious.

God bless this tiny little boat
And me who travels in it.
It stays afloat for years and years
And sinks within a minute.

And so the soul in which we sail,
Unknown by years of thinking,
Is deeply felt and understood
The minute that it's sinking.

 Love and fear.

Dear God,

We pray for another way of being:
another way of knowing.

Across the difficult terrain of our existence
we have attempted to build a highway
and in so doing have lost our footpath.
God lead us to our footpath:
Lead us there where in simplicity
we made move at the speed of natural creatures
and feel the earth's love beneath our feet.
Lead us there where step-by-step we may feel
the movement of creation in our hearts.
And lead us there where side-by-side
we may feel the embrace of the common soul.
Nothing can be loved at speed.

God lead us to the slow path; to the joyous insights
of the pilgrim; another way of knowing: another way of being.

Amen.

 Slowly.

We give thanks for singers.
All types of singers.
Popular, concert singers and
tuneless singers in the bath.
Whistlers, hummers and those
who sing while they work.
Singers of lullabies; singers of nonsense
and small scraps of melody.
Singers on branches and rooftops.
Morning yodellers and evening warblers.
Singers in seedy nightclubs, singers in the street;

Singers in cathedrals, school halls, grandstands,
back yards, paddocks, bedrooms, corridors,
stairwells and places of echo and resonance.

We give praise to all those who give some small voice
To the everyday joy of the soul.

Amen

 Circumstances.

God be with the mother.
As she carried her child may she carry her soul.
As her child was born, may she give birth and life and form
to her own, higher truth. As she nourished and protected her child,
may she nourish and protect her inner life and her independence.
For her soul shall be her most painful birth,
her most difficult child and the dearest sister to her other children.

Amen.

Singers.  

Dear God,

These circumstances will change.
This situation shall pass.

Amen.

 Simplicity.

God bless our contradictions,
those parts of us which seem out of character.
Let us be boldly and gladly out of character.
Let us be creatures of paradox and variety:
creatures of contrast; of light and shade; creatures of faith.
God be our constant. Let us step out of character into the unknown,
to struggle and love and do what we will.

Amen

 Simplify.

There are only two feelings.
Love and fear.
There are only two languages.
Love and fear.
There are only two activities.
Love and fear.
There are only two motives,
two procedures, two frameworks,
two results.
Love and fear.
Love and fear.

 Love one another.

Dear God,

We rejoice and give thanks for earthworms,
bees, ladybirds and broody hens;
for humans tending their gardens, talking to animals,
cleaning their homes and singing to themselves;
for rising of the sap, the fragrance of growth,
the invention of the wheelbarrow and the existence of the teapot,
we give thanks. We celebrate and give thanks.

Amen.

 Love is born.

God help us to live slowly:
To move simply:
To look softly:
To allow emptiness:
To let the heart create for us.

Amen.

 Love and fear.

God give us rain when we expect sun.
Give us music when we expect trouble.
Give us tears when we expect breakfast.
Give us dreams when we expect a storm.
Give us a stray dog when we expect congratulations.
God play with us, turn us sideways and around.

Amen.

 Circumstances

God let us be serious.
Face to face.
Heart to heart.
Let us be fully present.
Strongly present.
Deeply serious.
The closest we may come
to innocence.

Amen

Simplify.