peace in perplexities

Photo by Katie Moum on Unsplash  

Lord of the elements and changing seasons,
    keep me in the shadow of your hand.
When I am tossed to and fro with the winds of adversity 
    and the blasts of sickness and misunderstanding,
        still my racing heart, 
        quiet my troubled mind.
Bring me at last through the storms and tribulations of this mortal life
    into the calm evening of your unchanging love;
    and grant that in the midst of my present perplexities and confusion
I may experience your peace which passes human understanding.
 
Brother Ramon, SSF, 1935-2000, English Franciscan brother
 
______________________
 
 
 
Do not be anxious about anything, 
    but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving 
    let your requests be made known to God. 
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, 
    will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
 

Continue reading

a sign of your goodness

Photo by Joachim Riegel on Unsplash  
Father, I’m a man of my time and situation,
Around me, the signs and symbols of man’s fear, hatred, alienation;
a bomb exploding in a market square;
. . . faces on TV twisted in mocking confrontation.
It’s not that we haven’t tried, Father,
to find ways to peace and reconciliation
but always too little, too late;
the forces of opposition were too great . . . 
I am perplexed, angry, hopeless, sick, I want to turn
my back, wash my hands, save myself, my family, get out.
But every time I turn to go
there stands in my way a cross . . .
 
Lord, make me a child of hope, reborn from apathy,
cynicism, and despair, ready to work for that new man
you have made possible by walking the way of the cross yourself.
I do have hope grounded on your victory over powers
of evil, death itself, focused on your kingdom,
breaking on us now as light out of deep darkness.
And I do see signs of hope immediately around me.
I see a wider sign:
I see a sign – flower growing on a bombed-out site.
The sign – an empty cross.  The burden, Lord, is yours.
Lord, I am a prisoner of hope! There is life before death.
 
Prayer from Northern Ireland
 
__________________________
 
 
Turn to me and have mercy on me;
    show your strength in behalf of your servant;
save me, because I serve you
    just as my mother did.
Give me a sign of your goodness,
    that my enemies may see it and be put to shame,
    for you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.

Continue reading