Poems and Prayers for Lent 8

PRAYERS FOR GETHSEMANE

And here’s the second:

How shall I pray?

How shall I pray?
Are tears prayers, Lord?
Are screams prayers,
or groans
or sighs
or curses?
Can trembling hands be lifted to you,
or clenched fists
or the cold sweat that trickles down my back
or the cramps that knot my stomach?

Will you accept my prayers, Lord,
my real prayers,
rooted in the muck and mud and rock of my life,
and not just my pretty, cut-flower, gracefully arranged
bouquet of words?

Will you accept me, Lord,
as I really am,
messed up mixture of glory and grime?
Lord, help me!
Help me to trust that you do accept me as I am,
that I may be done with self-condemnation
and self-pity,
and accept myself.

Help me to accept you as you are, Lord:
mysterious
hidden
strange
unknowable;
and yet to trust
that your madness is wiser
than my timid, self-seeking sanities,
and that nothing you’ve ever done
has really been possible,
so I may dare to be a little mad, too.

Ted Loder, Guerrillas of Grace, 1981.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s