Friday, August 10, 2012

Prayer for those Caught-In Between

I read Rachel Held Evans' latest blog post this morning. The link is below. And I am struggling to find words for prayer.

Liberal Christianity, Conservative Christianity, and the Caught-In-Between

Lord of the Church, I can hardly find words to pray.  Thank you that the words themselves don't really matter in the end--nor whether they are beautiful and articulate or stumbling. 

Thank you, God, that you know the deepest longings, fears, hopes and joys of my heart and of others' hearts too.  Especially when it comes to our various church denominations, local churches....individuals.

I  am crying today, as I try to type a prayer. 

I am thinking of my colleague who had to leave our denomination because she acknowledged she is a lesbian. 

I am thinking of my sweet young friend who is being berated for reading a book that isn't quiet theologically "in line" with the extremely fundamentalist church in which she was formed. 

I am thinking of my friend who left my former church when I resigned the pastorate there and four years later is still struggling with what he believes and where he might fit in.

I am thinking of my friends who would be appalled and would want to argue if they knew I probably will not be voting for the Republican candidate.

I am thinking of the long-time friend who doesn't want to talk to my anymore because he is so appalled that I don't think my husband gets to make every single decision about our lives.

And I am thinking of the pastor from a mainline denomination who made completely false assumptions about me because of what church body ordained me.

And the fellow woman pastor who admitted she "doesn't like God, and doesn't want to ever open a Bible," and can function quite well in her large congregation in spite of that fact.

And the phone conversation I had with someone who said, "I just can't continue in my church. I love the people...but I feel like I am starving to death.  I know there is more, somehow."
 
And I am realizing just how long it has been since I did not feel caught in the middle.  Perhaps that is where I am supposed to be?

Forgive us, dear Jesus, for our pride and our foolishness and our silly bickering.  Forgive us for the times we have refused to allow the Spirit inside our church services.  And for the times others of us have called every foolish thing possible a "work of the Spirit."Forgive us for the people we have, both knowing and not knowing, turned away from your love. Forgive us for our fear of genuine holiness, of power, of redemption.  Forgive us for valuing education too much or too little.  For secretly rejoicing when someone from one of "those churches" messes up.  Forgive us for our stereotyping, for our unwillingness to remember who we are.    Forgive us.  Help us.  Break our hearts, heal our hearts, love us, correct us....

May you, Lord Jesus, be Lord of the Church.  May we, together in person or only in our thoughts, approach your cross together.

Lord, have mercy!

Amen

Thanking God for my Rev Gal colleagues.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Amen.

Elizabeth Nordquist said...

there are so many of us, in so many places. God, in your mercy, hear our prayer

Martha Spong said...

Thank you, dear Lord, for Dorcas, and for her ministry in the wide world. May she get a sense of how many people she touches today.

revkjarla said...

What a beautiful prayer. Thank you, and thank you for your ministry. Peace to you, and to all of us.

Muthah+ said...

Thank you, Dorcus, not only for your openness but also your willingness to proclaim a non-judgmental Gospel, a willingness to stay with friends who cannot think as you do. I thank you for loving them in the space that they want to make between the us's and them's that tears at the Body of Christ. And most of all, thank you for calling us all--liberals or conservatives to know the power of Christ to heal our warring ways.

Terri said...

Beautiful, poignant, Dorcas. thank you.

Michelle said...

Thank you, Dorcas...I needed to pray this, too!

Mary Beth said...

God bless you today, sweet friend! How you witness to me of God's grace in many places.

Dorcas (aka SingingOwl) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dorcas (aka SingingOwl) said...

Dear friends, thank you for your loving comments. My heart is broken over this in ways I cannot express. I don't know what to do, what to say, how to fix it...or even how to BE anymore. Your coments made me cry all over again. ((((hugs))) Prayers for the conservatives, the liberals, and the in-betweens among us.

Diane said...

thank you, Dorcas. you are wonderful.

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Thank you, Dorcas. Today I am praying your prayer in the post -- and also the words from your comment:

"My heart is broken over this in ways I cannot express. I don't know what to do, what to say, how to fix it ... or even how to BE anymore. ... Prayers for the conservatives, the liberals, and the in-betweens among us."