Drawing Near

Matthew5_3 photo

Tomorrow begins what the church calls Holy Week, the week we remember how Jesus set his face toward Jerusalem and with full knowledge, went towards the cross that awaited him. As that has so much meaning for me, I’d like this week to look different somehow, to stand out in significance, to be sacred. What could that look like? What might I need to let go of, to make room for the sacred?

This morning I’m mindful of how the Almighty God drew near to us in the person of Jesus. How he chose the small, the weak, the foolish, the poor and broken of this world to show us his love. How he chooses each one of us. I’m mindful of Jesus and his willingness to lay down his life, to say to the father, “Thy will be done,” when he knew it would cost him everything. I’m thinking of how much we need his Spirit among us, and within us. I’m aware of my own need. And I’m reminded of a prayer I read recently that I used for meditation today. Read it slowly and thoughtfully, as a prayer. May it help prepare your heart for the sacredness of this holy season.

Spirit of the Mighty, Gentle One,

Come upon me, anoint me.

I see the oppressed.

I name them; I hold them close.

Make my life into good news for them.

I see the brokenhearted.

I name them; I hold them close.

Give me gentle grace to bind up their hearts.

I see the imprisoned.

I name them; I hold them close.

Give me true words and deeds to release them.

I see the ruined cities.

I name them; I hold them close.

Make me a part of their building up.

Spirit of God, be upon me

I see my own ruins, my chains.

Hold me close

And set me free, that I may be

Your good news for others.

— By Steve Garnaas-Holmes

www.unfoldinglight.net

Today’s prayer practice: Naming our poverty

Read the prayer above in stillness of heart. Name those you know who are oppressed or brokenhearted, imprisoned or in chains. Hold them close, then hold them out before God. Name those cities and countries that lie in ruins. Name your own city. Ask him to let you see the poverty and need around you. Ask to see your own poverty. Ask him to speak through this prayer and to prepare your spirit for the Holy Week to come. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3

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