A prayer for the thirty-third Sunday of ordinary time.

God.

We are a sad and fearful people. Not all of us, of course. Some of us some of the time are happy and confident. And we don’t want to be fearful. But all of us know that we will face pain and will face death. And it shapes our thinking.

Sometimes we work hard to avoid pain. Sometimes we work hard to ignore life. We mostly wish we were better at accepting life.

We confess that we have spent more time this week worrying about what might happen than we have celebrating what we could celebrate.

We confess that we have had moments where we identify with the unruly, undisciplined, busybodies of Thessalonika.

We confess that we grow weary of doing good. Probably because it looks more fun to be unruly, undisciplined busybodies.

We confess that we are fearful and we’re rather not talk to you about our real deep fears because we’d have to acknowledge them out loud.

We confess that we are afraid you won’t find us good enough because no one else does.

We confess that we are afraid that we would have to change for you to love us, to notice us.

And we confess that we are afraid that if we don’t change enough, you will cut us off.

But you paint a picture for Isaiah of a place that knows about pain and weakness and weeping and responds with healing.

You paint a picture where everything works, and it is for your people.

It is for us.

God we want to hope in that kind of place.

Help us accept your love for us. Help us look more at you than the news. Help us see you in our moment of need. And always.

Through Christ our Lord.

Amen.

+++

Reflecting Isaiah 65: 17-25 and 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13.

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