Saturday, August 11, 2007

"How Shall I Pray?" by Ted Loder

I returned a few hours ago from a week with my family in Iowa. Months ago, we planned a reunion, but my grandmother's declining health and pending death gradually overshadowed our expectations for the week. She "rallied" for the time together and was physically present quite often, though she is not always lucid. When she was alert, she enjoyed participating in or hearing about other events of the week: we updated our family portrait, we celebrated birthdays, my sister flew back from Japan, my brother surprised us, my wife and I celebrated our 12th wedding anniversary. When it was time to leave, I struggled to wave goodbye to my grandmother; I do not expect to see her alive again in this life. The trip was an emotional roller coaster.

The day after I left for Iowa, a member of the congregation died, a dear man who has wrestled disease with such dignity that many people didn't know he was dying. Then, later in the week, another member of the congregation, a devoted wife, mother, youth leader and church leader didn't wake up Thursday morning. This is devastating news for the church.

I'm preparing a sermon for worship tomorrow and am at a loss. I found the prayer How Shall I Pray? by Ted Loder (in the collection Guerrillas of Grace) which I pray tonight. This is the entire prayer; the first half really resonates.

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 the mud and the 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.

31 Comments:

Blogger Roeg said...

The prayer really touched home for me. Thanks for sharing it. I'm glad your week away went well (Happy Anniversary by the way).

11/8/07 21:08  
Anonymous tixie said...

first - Happy Anniversary!

ditto what roeg said... i can relate particularly well to the knots in the stomach... more like what it must feel like to have the wind knocked out of you...

it takes sun and rain to make a rainbow...

13/8/07 10:41  
Anonymous Jen Peters McCurry said...

I can't believe how much loss that POP has experienced in these past months! I am especially sorry not to be there at times like this; the congregation and its leaders are in my prayers. Thanks for the poem that helps name the pain...

18/8/07 15:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi there! I could have sworn I've been to this site before but after browsing through some of the post I realized it's new to me.

Nonetheless, I'm definitely delighted I found it and I'll be book-marking and checking
back often!
Review my web-site www.daily-wet-tshirt.com

5/12/12 06:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pretty component of content. I simply stumbled
upon your website and in accession capital to assert that I
acquire in fact enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I will be subscribing in
your augment or even I success you get right of entry to consistently
fast.
Feel free to surf my web-site - Teen porn - Sex - Free Porn Pussy

6/12/12 16:46  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know this if off topic but I'm looking into starting my own weblog and was wondering what all is required to get setup? I'm
assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty
penny? I'm not very internet smart so I'm not 100% sure. Any recommendations or advice would be greatly appreciated. Appreciate it
My website :: Babysitter Caught Playing With Herself

7/12/12 14:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Many thanks, However I am
going through problems with your RSS. I don't understand the reason why I am unable to subscribe to it. Is there anybody having identical RSS issues? Anyone that knows the solution can you kindly respond? Thanx!!
Feel free to visit my web-site ; http://amazingteenbabes.com/

8/12/12 07:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent weblog here! Additionally your web site quite a bit up very fast!
What web host are you using? Can I am getting your affiliate link to your host?
I want my site loaded up as fast as yours lol
My web page ... teenpornpost.com

8/12/12 12:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just could not leave your website prior to suggesting that
I actually loved the standard information a person supply on your visitors?
Is gonna be back continuously to check out new posts
Visit my blog post : Free Teen Porn

8/12/12 17:46  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's very straightforward to find out any matter on net as compared to books, as I found this piece of writing at this web site.
my site :: photos of tendulkar

24/12/12 08:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the good writeup. It actually used to
be a amusement account it. Glance complex to far delivered agreeable from you!

By the way, how could we keep in touch?
Feel free to visit my web site :: how to become wealthy

29/12/12 19:09  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think this is among the most significant information for me.
And i'm glad reading your article. But should remark on some general things, The site style is great, the articles is really great : D. Good job, cheers
My page: The Next Shot

1/1/13 11:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know whether it's just me or if everyone else experiencing issues with your site.

It seems like some of the written text within your content
are running off the screen. Can somebody else please provide feedback and let me know if this
is happening to them as well? This may be a issue with my browser because I've had this happen before. Kudos
My website: free chatsite

1/1/13 17:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My coder is trying to persuade me to move to .net from PHP.
I have always disliked the idea because of the costs.
But he's tryiong none the less. I've been using WordPress on a number of websites for about a year
and am anxious about switching to another platform.
I have heard good things about blogengine.
net. Is there a way I can import all my wordpress posts into it?
Any kind of help would be greatly appreciated!
Take a look at my homepage ; www.ides.illinois.gov

14/1/13 15:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll right away grasp your rss feed as I can not find your email subscription link or newsletter service. Do you've any?

Kindly let me recognise in order that I could subscribe.
Thanks.
My blog post - Oregon mortgage aid

15/1/13 01:35  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I seriously love your site.. Pleasant colors & theme.
Did you create this website yourself? Please reply back
as I'm wanting to create my own site and would like to find out where you got this from or what the theme is named. Thank you!
Also see my website - cheap iPhone 5 for sale online

21/1/13 16:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I used to be suggested this web site via my cousin.
I am no longer sure whether or not this put up is written through him as
nobody else recognize such precise about my trouble.
You're wonderful! Thank you!
My webpage : replica Pro beats headphones by dre

24/1/13 04:27  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This paragraph is truly a pleasant one it assists new web people, who are wishing for blogging.
Also visit my web page great summer cottage

26/1/13 20:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could not resist commenting. Perfectly written!
Here is my website ... Gambling

1/2/13 04:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi there I am so glad I found your blog page,
I really found you by mistake, while I was searching on Google for something
else, Nonetheless I am here now and would just like to say cheers for a tremendous post and a all round exciting blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to go through it all
at the moment but I have book-marked it and also included your RSS feeds, so
when I have time I will be back to read more, Please do keep
up the excellent jo.

Stop by my web page life quotes
Also see my page: facebook quotes

4/3/13 16:44  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great article. I will be experiencing some of these issues as well.
.

Also visit my website :: dumbbell set

6/3/13 13:46  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's very straightforward to find out any topic on web as compared to textbooks, as I found this post at this web page.

my web page - canadian online casino
Also see my web page: online casino

9/3/13 12:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right now it appears like Wordpress is the preferred blogging platform available right now.
(from what I've read) Is that what you're using on your blog?



Have a look at my web blog ... Va"xer i Sverige

21/3/13 19:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey great website! Does running a blog similar to this take
a great deal of work? I have virtually no expertise in programming however I was hoping to start my own blog in the
near future. Anyway, should you have any suggestions or techniques for new
blog owners please share. I know this is off subject nevertheless I
just needed to ask. Many thanks!

Also visit my homepage Graduate Quarterly

21/3/13 19:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

c6cmfy8ap

Also visit my blog post :: electric toothbrush

28/3/13 16:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi there, I discovered your blog by the use of Google while looking for a similar subject, your site came up, it seems to be great.
I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.
Hello there, just become aware of your blog via Google, and found that it is truly informative.
I am going to be careful for brussels. I'll appreciate when you proceed this in future. Lots of people will probably be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

my web blog :: progressive dj

1/4/13 17:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great article.

Visit my website: DJ

1/4/13 17:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically
tweet my newest twitter updates. I've been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this. Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

Here is my page ... party girl fuck

2/6/13 18:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's not my first time to pay a quick visit this web page, i am browsing this website dailly and obtain pleasant information from here daily.

Stop by my blog post ... teen masturbation

3/6/13 10:03  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

certainly like your website however you need to
take a look at the spelling on several of your posts.
Several of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it very troublesome to inform the reality
then again I will surely come back again.

My blog post ... Amatorki Z Malibu Lektor PL

15/6/13 10:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

helpful information They will list what each plan covers and the limit on the amount you can claim. Put together in advance by understanding the maximum amount of understanding of insurance plan that you can. Petplan is licensed in all 50 states and Washington, D.

17/6/13 08:28  

Post a Comment

<< Home