Monday, July 23, 2012

Praying 10 minutes a day: TUESDAY 7/24


Find a quiet time and place to pray... take a few deep breaths...
be still... and know that God is near...



A word to reflect on:   
The LORD gathers the dispersed of Israel,
   healing the brokenhearted,
      and binding up their wounds...
-Psalm 147





(Before moving on to the reflection below,
   spend some quiet time with the scripture verse above...)

I'm neither lost nor wounded, Lord,
   and my heart's not broken
but I know so many who've lost their way,
   who feel alone and abandoned...

I know so many whose broken hearts need mending,
   whose wounds are sore in need of healing...

I know so many who seek your face
   but do not find you;
who call to you in prayer
   and strain to hear your voice;
who long for your love
   and wonder if you've forgotten them...  

You gather the dispersed,
   you heal the brokenhearted,
      you bind up their wounds... 

I know so many, Lord,
   who wait only for what you promise
and wonder why you delay
   in keeping your word...

So many wander aimlessly, hopeless, 
   set apart by loneliness, anxiety and fear,
wondering where to turn, how to turn,
   if to turn...

In spite of all our connections, Lord,
   so many find themselves scattered, lost,
      longing to be drawn to your embrace,
         into the safety of a circle
             whose company they might trust...

You gather the dispersed,
   you heal the brokenhearted,
      you bind up their wounds... 

Lead us to work with you, Lord,
   to gather in those who live alone, in the margins,
      those who have no place to go (who fear to go to any place),
         who wait to be invited and yet find themselves afraid
            to accept an invitation...

Help us to gather in those who long to be included
   and who slip, so easily, into the shadows,
      who fade into the corners of our good times 
         and end up all alone in the middle of a crowd...

Heal the brokenhearted, Lord:
   help them bare their hearts to your gentle touch,
      letting go their fear of sharing
         what aches within their souls...

Bind up any wounds inflicted on purpose, 
   by accident or through carelessness
when we were too selfish, too busy, too self-absorbed, 
   to be as gentle, as kind, as patient with others
      as we would have others be with us...

And whenever possible, Lord,
   help me to gather into my heart, 
      into my life and company,
those in my family, parish, neighborhood and work
   who have no place to go 
      and no one to go with them...

Whenever I might mend a broken heart, Lord,
   give me grace to reach out gently and with patience
      to offer what I might, in ways that might be helpful
         to those who share with me the pain they carry...

And, Lord...  

Where I've been the one who's wounded others, 
   where I've been the source of pain,
help me see and own the hurt I've caused 
   and lead me to ask forgiveness, to make amends,
      to bind up with my own heart's sorrow
         the grief I've visited on others' souls...

You gather the dispersed,
   you heal the brokenhearted,
      you bind up their wounds... 

Help me do the same where I'm able and when I can,
   that the mercy I ask of you, Lord, be the mercy I offer others...

In the stillness of my prayer,
   help me know and name 
      the ones whom I might gather in,
         the broken hearts which I might mend
            and the wounds I might, with mercy, 
               help to heal...

In the quiet, Lord, 
   gather me into your peace,
      mend the brokenness my sins have wrought
         and heal the wounds my heart has known...  

To ponder and pray over...
In my daily rounds, who wants and needs to be gathered in?
What brokenness have I caused others?  What brokenness might I mend?
Have my faults and failings wounded others?
How might I bind up the wounds of the pain I've caused?
What will I ask of the Lord today?
From this prayer time, what word or phrase will I keep with me
   to carry through the rest of my day?

(After you spend some time with these questions,
   pray the reflection above one more time...)


Here are some tips for praying 10 minutes a day.  If you find these daily prayer reminders helpful, please let me know - and share them with others.  You'll find an archive of these daily posts here.

 
 
   
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2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm new to your blog. Thank you for it!

God bless.
-Derrick
Stockton, CA

Austin Fleming said...

Welcome aboard, Derrick!