”GRACIOUS AND LOVING GOD, I give you thanks this day for the gift of my present work.
I hold in prayer those who are jobless and those who have yet to discover their work.
I hold in prayer the young people throughout the world and in my community who must have a job to help their families and who, therefore, cannot continue their studies.
Have mercy on me for the times I have failed to love. I praise you for giving me the opportunity to share in the work of re-creating this world.
My prayer is that my work makes the world a little more just, a little more peaceful, and a little more hospitable for everyone.”
– Nancy Pineda-Madrid and Angela Fernández
Way to Live: Christian Practices for Teens (via The Upper Room)
The world that we live in is lack of justice, struggling for peace, and very often inhospitable. Sadly, I wonder how many a times I fall into the trap of contributing to the problem than being part of the solution. I hope to have a good start this week. In fact, yesterday was a delightful surprise of multiple blessings of a pleasant enriching drive to the Seminari Theoloji Malaysia in Seremban. Apart from a full day seminar and a pretty “fulfilling” dinner, I think the most precious gift for yesterday was getting to know Dion Forster. He beautifully captures in essence our time in his post Seminari Theoloji Malaysia – new friends, learning, and teaching.
I was caught by this phrase in the above prayer:
“Have mercy on me for the times I have failed to love. I praise you for giving me the opportunity to share in the work of re-creating this world.
My prayer is that my work makes the world a little more just, a little more peaceful, and a little more hospitable for everyone”
While listening to Dion, there were a number of “a-ha” moments where I was inspired and drawn to what he and the church he’s part of in South Africa has been doing and is doing. One thing which impressed me was how the “social holiness” dimension was embodied even in the most basic of structures and practices – even to the whole process of the formation of a pastor. More on his session in another post.
Now, what’s on my mind is how my time spent today will contribute to “God’s will” and “God’s work” in the seconds which keep on ticking even as I key these words, the space in which I will occupy in my movements, the projects I need to complete and most of all in the interactions with people for the whole day. That’s part of my work. But this prayer transforms what can be taken as “mere work” (which is seen as boring and a necessary evil) to “a gift”. And it truly becomes a gift as I begin to see in some small way … a world that is a little more just, a little more peaceful, and a little more hospitable to everyone.
Lord, in your mercy …
Hear our prayer.