Tag Archives: prayer

Prayer of Reconciliation and Peace

by Rev. Dr. Barbara Billey

I invite you to close your eyes and to feel into your breath, the gentle rise and fall of inhale and exhale. With each wave upon wave of breath, enter the refuge of welcoming silence. Feel yourself embraced by the luminous quiet of Mystery, of Holy Presence. What you need is here.

Ask yourself: Is there someone with whom I need to reconcile? A person with whom I am angry or who has hurt me deeply? Someone who incites my judgment, avoidance, or exclusion?

If comfortable, allow the image of this person to surface in your imagination. Notice thoughts and memories that arise, how these live as feelings or sensations in your body.

Gaze into this persons’ eyes. She/he is sometimes afraid, hurting, angry, joyful, and loving, a person with hopes and dreams, sorrows and joys. She/he, like you and all of creation, is filled at the core with Holy Presence.

Bring your awareness to the space of your heart. Breathe deeply into this space the always abiding and already healing love of our Holy One. Breathe out peace and healing into the heart of the other.

Repeat this circle of breathing until you feel a softening in your heart, a release from separation and alienation from this person. (If this is not possible, surrender any and all judgment of yourself. You can return to this prayer at another time.)

Allow the image of your person to fade.

Take a few more moments of silence to rest into the freedom of healing and peace. What you need is here.

You might end this prayer by dancing the dance of releasement, writing a poem and/or listening to lovely music.

Often we are unwilling to surrender our “righteousness” perspective or we refuse to accept “what is” true in the reality of our life situation, leading to all kinds of suffering within ourselves and between persons. There are also persons who have caused us immense pain through abuse. We can forgive them, too, without engaging in further relationship, thus releasing ourselves into peace and healing, while wishing them healing and all good things. This is often a longer process.

A helpful resource is found in a chapter from “The Grace in Aging” by Kathleen Dowling Singh entitled Forgiveness as Liberation from Aversions: Freedom from Anger and Judgment.

Another resource is: “Forgiveness in the Service of Justice” by Sr. Margaret Farley

Barbara J. Billey, M.Ed., M.A., D.Min.

Registered Psychotherapist
Registered Canadian Art Therapist
Wedding Officiant
Priest, ARCWP, Windsor, ON, Canada

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On Aging, Gracefully

IMG_6552“Prayer of an Anonymous Abbess:

Lord, thou knowest better than myself that I am growing older and will soon be old. Keep me from becoming too talkative, and especially from the unfortunate habit of thinking that I must say something on every subject and at every opportunity.

Release me from the idea that I must straighten out other peoples’ affairs. With my immense treasure of experience and wisdom, it seems a pity not to let everybody partake of it. But thou knowest, Lord, that in the end I will need a few friends.

Keep me from the recital of endless details; give me wings to get to the point.

Grant me the patience to listen to the complaints of others; help me to endure them with charity. But seal my lips on my own aches and pains — they increase with the increasing years and my inclination to recount them is also increasing.

I will not ask thee for improved memory, only for a little more humility and less self-assurance when my own memory doesn’t agree with that of others. Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be wrong.

Keep me reasonably gentle. I do not have the ambition to become a saint — it is so hard to live with some of them — but a harsh old person is one of the devil’s masterpieces.

Make me sympathetic without being sentimental, helpful but not bossy. Let me discover merits where I had not expected them, and talents in people whom I had not thought to possess any. And, Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.

Amen”

― Margot Benary-Isbert

New Year’s Prayer

I Hold My Life Up to You Now
Patient God,
the clock struck midnight
and I partied with a strange sadness in my heart,
confusion in my mind.

Now, I ask you
to gather me,
for I realize
the storms of time have scattered me,
the furies of the year past have driven me,
many sorrows have scarred me,
many accomplishments have disappointed me,
much activity has wearied me,
and fear has spooked me
into a hundred hiding places,
one of which is pretended gaiety.
I am sick of a string of “have-a-nice-days.”
What I want is passionate days,
wondrous days,
dangerous days,
blessed days,
surprising days,
What I want is you!
Patient God
this day teeters on the edge of waiting
and things seem to slip away from me,
as though everything were only memory
and memory is capricious.
Help me not to let my life slip away from me.
O God, I hold up my life to you now,
as much as I can,
as high as I can,
in this mysterious reach called prayer.
Come close, lest I wobble and fall short.
It is not days or years I seek from you,
not infinity and enormity,
but small things and moments and awareness,
awareness that you are in what I am
and in what I have been indifferent to.
It is not new time,
but new eyes,
new heart I seek,
and you.
Patient God,
in this teetering time,
this time in the balance,
this time of waiting,
make we aware of moments,
moments of song,
moments of bread and friends,
moments of jokes
(some of them on me)
which, for a moment, deflate my pomposities;
moments of sleep and warm beds,
moments of children laughing and parents bending,
moments of sunsets and sparrows outspunking winter,
moments when broken things get mended
with glue or guts or mercy or imagination;
moments when splinters shine and rocks shrink,
moments when I know myself blest,
not because I am so awfully important,
but because you are so awesomely God,
no less of the year to come
as of all the years past;
no less of this moment
than of all my moments;
no less of those who forget you
as of those who remember,
as I do now,
in this teetering time.
O Patient God,
make something new in me,
in this year,
for you.
coiled basket - Evelyn Ward de Roo

coiled basket – Evelyn Ward de Roo

~ written by Ted Loder, in Guerillas of Grace: Prayers for the Battle.

A Beautiful Prayer

sunset

O God of Uncreated Light, we come before you now to offer you ourselves. We can only do this through your grace.
Grant us the grace of mindfulness. Help us to be calm, so that we may rest in your silence and peace.
Grant us the grace of willingness. Transform our will into yours, with delight and joy.
Grant us the grace of heartfulness. Unite us with you in the mystery of love, that we may love our neighbors as ourselves.
All this we ask with glad confidence and hope in you, O God, by the power of the Holy Spirit through the humanity of your blessed son Jesus Christ. Amen.

Carl McColman