Wednesday, July 31, 2019

The doorway into thanks (Mary Oliver)

It doesn’t have to be
the blue iris, it could be
weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
small stones, just
pay attention, then patch
a few words together and don’t try
to make them elaborate, this isn’t
a contest but the doorway
into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.

--Mary Oliver, Thirst                             

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Thy Will Be Done (Donna Cori Gibson)

The life that I’ve been living
Has brought me to this end
I come before you, Jesus
Help me be born again
Set me on the straight and narrow
Forgive me of my sin
Show me how I should live
A new life I begin

Thy will be done
Oh, that I may follow your design
Thy will be done
I’ll labor to conform my will to thine
Thy Kingdom come
And live and reign within this heart of mine
As it is in heaven, now and forever
Thy will be done

I can’t love what I don’t know
I have so much to learn
To always pray and read your word
From this path I will not turn
I will keep all your commands
Obey authority
I will praise you for your mercy
In the work you’ve done in me.


May I follow perfectly
Everything that you decree
Your will is fulfilled in me
This day and always


To hear Donna Cori Gibson sing Thy Will Be Done, click on the video below.

Monday, July 29, 2019

To open your hands before God (Henri Nouwen)

  To pray means to open your hands before God.  It means slowly relaxing the tension that squeezes your hands together and accepting your existence with an increasing readiness, not as a possession to defend, but as a gift to receive.  Above all, prayer is a way of life that allows you to find stillness in the midst of the world where you open your hands to God’s promises and find hope for yourself, your neighbor, and your world.  In prayer, you encounter God not only in the small voice and the soft breeze, but also in the midst of the turmoil of the world, in the distress and joy of your neighbor, and in the loneliness of your own heart.

  Prayer leads you to see new paths and to hear new melodies in the air.  Prayer is the breath of your life that gives you freedom to go and to stay where you wish, to find the many signs that point out the way to a new land.  Praying is not simply some necessary compartment in the daily schedule of a Christian or a source of support in time of need, nor is it restricted to Sunday mornings or mealtimes.  Praying is living.  It is eating and drinking, acting and resting, teaching and learning, playing and working.  Praying pervades every aspect of our lives.  It is the unceasing recognition that God is wherever we are, always inviting us to come closer and to celebrate the divine gift of being alive.

  In the end, a life of prayer is a life with open hands – a life where we need not be ashamed of our weaknesses but realize that it is more perfect for us to be led by the Other than to try to hold everything in our own hands.

--Henri Nouwen