A prayer for the fourth Sunday after Epiphany and every day that we need to reflect on love.

God.

You invite us into relationship with you. You send us to do your work.

We don’t feel worthy of either one. Except sometimes.

walk in loveSometimes we expect you to help us work on our terms. We demand your love on our terms. We say, “If you really loved us, you would fix this, you would change them, you would leave me alone.” We say, “I’m doing this for you, so you should do that for me.” We say that we can’t believe in a God like we are told you are.

But when we stop and talk with you, we have much to confess.

We confess that we are not the ones who get to decide what your love is, you do. We confess that we are not the ones who get to decide what your work is, you do. We confess that we like telling you what you should do more that we like receiving your words of challenge and comfort and compassion. And we confess that we don’t really believe that you have already forgiven us.

God, you are patient and kind. You don’t envy or boast. You bear all things, believe all things, hope all things, endure all things. We know that because you, Jesus, did that. All the way to the cross and beyond.

God, help us to love with your love, to work with your strength, to speak your words, to wait in your silence.

God, help us.

Amen.

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A reflection of Jeremiah 1, 1 Corinthians 13, and Luke 4, the texts for February 3.