Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Prayer Vigil: Turning Grace into Blades of Act

Teach me to take all grace
And spring it into blades of act,
Grow spears and sheaves of charity,
While each new instant, (new eternity)
Flowering with clean and individual circumstance,
Speaks me the whisper of [God's] consecrating Spirit.
Then will obedience bring forth new Incarnations
Shining to God with the features of [the Lord's] Christ."

- Thomas Merton

On Friday, July 29, Bread for the World is hosting a debt crisis prayer vigil.  Many of us are using Facebook and Twitter (great tools!) to connect with each other, to come together in one voice. But these earthly tools social media are just a beginning. The true communication is outside these tools. We must take a few moments to step outside ourselves and allow ourselves to be immersed in love of the one who is Love.  The First Great Commandment.

But our connection with the Creator does not come to true fulfillment if we don't find a way to share it with our neighbors.  That's why we pray with each other and for each other.  Not just the other that we know.  That's too easy. We pray for the other that we don't know.  We pray in solidarity with those who will be hurt by the pending decisions of our Congress.

But we are not called to put ourselves in an adversarial role with those who are making the decisions that will promote suffering.  We can and should lobby them with phone calls, and letters and e-mails and tweets. God calls us to speak for justice.  But our advocacy is not complete unless we also pray that the same spirit of compassion that permeates us also touches them in some way.  The Second Great Commandment.

We are called to spend this day in a vigil, with our lights flickering in the spirit of the Second Great Commandment.

Our prayer is very simple.  O God be present in my candle

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