NIGHT PRAYER: Sunday 1/30

On Sundays, Night Prayer will focus on an element from the day's celebration of Mass. Tonight we reflect on second reading, from Saint Paul.

Love is many things, Lord,
   and perhaps above all - love is patient...

Patiently, love waits
   while the beloved delays and demurs, tarries
      and tries the patience of the lover...

With quiet patience,
    love endures defeat and disappointment, 
allowing no discouragement
    to snatch the beloved from its embrace...

Without complaint, love suffers
    for the sake of the beloved
and no hardship, no pain 
    proves to be to much for love to bear...

You're a patient lover, Lord:
   you wait for me, you never give up on me;
   you endure my foolishness even when I turn away from you;
   you suffer for my sake and freely bear my burdens...

I've done nothing to deserve your patient love:
   I waste it, I turn from it,
   I deny and reject it, 
but even then, patiently,
   you wait for my heart to change,
   you endure my slow progress,
   and you suffer my self-pity
all because your love for me is patient
   - and you will not let me go...
And you ask me, Lord, to love my neighbor,
    my sister and my brother, the stranger
with the same patience
    with which you love me...

Keep my from the quick and hasty judgment, Lord;
   let me judge others as I'd have them judge me:
      patiently...  and with justice and mercy...

Curb my sharp tongue and give me patience in my speech:
   let no harsh words fly from my mouth to wound
      the innocence of others...

Give me patience in understanding those who are not like me
   and help me see in the differences
what, in others, complements and completes me
    - and them and all of us together...  

Give me the patience I need, Lord to move among others
   with gentleness, reverence and respect,
careful not to step on others' hearts, letting others go before me,
    tending others needs before tending to my own...  

Give me patience, Lord, with those I live and work with,
   the ones I take for granted or ignore,
   the ones I so often and easily forget
         in my rush to get what I want, when I want it...

Give me patience with strangers, Lord,
    those I meet in the course of every day:
help me respect and love them, Lord,
    as patiently as you love me...

And give me patience with myself, Lord,
   when I'm quick to judge, to doubt, abuse and hate myself.
Remind me of the mercy you offer me,
   your trust in the person you made me to be,
   your gentle touch upon my wounds and pain,
   your mercy, in which you never fail to bathe me...

Forgive and heal me, Lord, 
    when my lack of patience leads me to anger and judgment, 
    harsh words or silence, jealousy or self-pity:
when my impatience spirals into doubt and fear,
   calm my anxious heart with the patient grace of your heart
and hold me in your mercy
    until your patience heals my soul
        and cleanses me in peace...

Protect me, Lord, while I'm awake
and watch over me while I sleep
that awake, I might keep watch with yu
and asleep, rest in your peace...
Be Still My Soul by Kari Jobe




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