NIGHT PRAYER: Friday 7/29

As you know, Lord, 
a dear friend shares these prayers
with incarcerated men and women whom she calls
"her friends in the gated community..."
I live and I write these prayers
some 2,000 miles away from the jail my friend visits
    (and who knows what other realities separate me
    from the lives and stories of my brothers and sisters 
    in that gated community)
yet somehow, even often, my friend tells me,
the words I post here touch their hearts 
with blessing, hope and healing...
But that somehow is no puzzle, Lord:
it's clear to me and to those who pray with me
that your Holy Spirit moves mysteriously, 
    with grace and patient subtlety,
in any and in all whose hearts are open
to your mercy, your compassion, 
    your pardon and your peace...

When your Spirit opens me
    and my imagination, heart and mind,
to however you might move and guide 
    my thoughts and creativity
And then that same Spirit, Lord,
opens wide the hearts and minds, the souls 
    of all who come here seeking you
who seek a word, a key to finally open 
    all that's locked up in the human heart
It's then, Lord, 
    when ALL our hearts are open,
that somehow, your Spirit makes us one in prayer,
    and brings us all together:
brothers, sisters, one in you
    and in your word, your truth and presence...

We thank you for your Spirit's grace
    and all the ways you come to us
        with healing in your word
    to unlock our hearts that we might find
        our freedom in your peace...

Protect us, Lord while we're awake
and watch over us while we sleep
that awake, we might keep watch with you
and asleep, rest in your peace...

Two songs this evening:
    1) a new, simple chant, a peaceful evening prayer;
        (an instrumental intro precedes the chant)
    2) a song I offered just a few weeks ago
        but which follows so well after tonight's prayer...  
1) Open My Heart by Ana Hernandez
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2) Spirit, Open My Heart
       Lyrics by Ruth Duck, arranged by Alfred Fedak
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Spirit open my heart
To the joy and pain of living
As you love may I love
In receiving and in giving
Spirit, open my heart

1 God, replace my stony heart
with a heart that's kind and tender.
All my coldness and fear
to your grace I now surrender.

2 Write your love upon my heart
as my law, my goal, my story.
In each thought, word, and deed,
may my living bring you glory.


3 May I weep with those who weep,
share the joy of sister, brother.
In the welcome of Christ,
may we welcome one another.





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