Pause for Prayer: FRIDAY 9/11

Today we remember the tragedy of a clear September morning, 19 years ago...  Spend some time with my prayer; with Carl Daw's haunting anthem; and with verses from Psalm 46...

Pause for prayer...

All good gifts come from your hand,  O God
and into our clumsy grasp
you entrust the precious realities
of life, justice and peace...

We remember this day
how fragile is world peace
and our vulnerability
in each other’s hands...

We remember those who died
and those who mourn their loss...

We remember those whose courage
gave us new models for bravery...

We remember those who gave their lives
to save their neighbors...

We remember that day, that sunny morning
when our nation's borders were broken,
pierced to the depths of our hearts...

We hunger and pray
for the healing peace
that only you can give,
that we all long to share...

Bring us to the day, O Lord,
when war is but a memory
and peace our way of life;

when a harvest of justice
will nourish every nation...

Hasten the advent of that day, O God
and let our pride not stand in its way... 

Hasten the day of justice and peace
and let nothing we do
keep us from its promise...


When Sudden Terror Tears Apart*
  performed by the Allen Symphony Chorus

When sudden terror tears apart
the world we thought was ours,
we find how fragile strength can be,
how limited our powers.

As tow’r and fortress fall, we watch
with disbelieving stare
and numbly hear the anguished cries
that pierce the ash-filled air.

Yet most of all we are aware
of emptiness and void:
of lives cut short, of structures razed,
of confidence destroyed.

From this abyss of doubt and fear
we grope for words to pray,
and hear our stammering tongues embrace
a timeless Kyrie.

Have mercy, Lord,
give strength and peace
and make our courage great;
restrain our urge to seek revenge,
to turn our hurt to hate.

Help us to know your steadfast love,
your presence near as breath;
rekindle in our hearts the hope
of life that conquers death.

* Rev. Carl P. Daw, Jr. wrote this hymn to commemorate the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon September 11.  (Hope Publishing Co.)

From Psalm 46
God is our refuge and our strength,
   an ever-present help in distress.
Thus we do not fear,
   though the earth be shaken
and mountains quake
   to the depths of the sea,
The Lord of hosts is with us...
- Psalm 46

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