A prayer for the fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time.


We are confused.

People talk about being blessed.

That usually means they are getting better, they are getting stronger, they are getting richer, they are getting parking places.

We read about David the king becoming more powerful because you were with him.

He was blessed.

But then we read about Paul who was weak and insulted and persecuted and unpopular.

Where David had a fortress, Paul was captive in many fortresses.

Where David had an army, Paul was arrested by the army.

Where David commissioned choirs, Paul sang with Silas in jail at night.

Paul does not seem blessed.

And yet you spoke to him in the middle of his troubles often, it seems.

“My grace is sufficient for you,” you told him.

Given the choice between being healthy and having your grace, God,

we’d rather have both. If we can be honest.

But I think that it isn’t a choice.

I think that you invite us to trust you and to follow you and to lean on you,

so that we are blessed, regardless of what happens to us.

Help us understand that today, I ask, as I stand in a hospital chapel, through Christ our Lord.