A prayer for Palm Sunday 2023


This week your people were murdered.

They were just being children, or filling in or cleaning up or leading.
They were just living in a victimized country in Europe.
They were being people.

This week your people lost homes and lost lives in storms.
This week your people, through natural causes and traumatic actions, left this life.

Your people went through all this. With prayer and petition we made our requests known to you and death still happened.

If you hadn’t experienced death from the inside,
in an excruciating and shameful way,
we could rightly be angry at your callous creation of a world with endings.

And we can still be angry at the endings.

But you participate in the loss,
you resonate with the pain,
you are God with us.

We come to you on Palm Sunday,
aware that the smiling crowds foreshadow our gleeful sense
of being blessed for the good things.
We are reminded by your story and your Spirit
that our battle isn’t against people but against powers,
that you wrestled with those powers.

When we pray, at your teaching,
“Thy kingdom come so that thy will will be done
on earth as it is in heaven,”
we are asking for much more than we imagine.

Today, I don’t ask for easy happiness.
Today, I ask, on behalf of us all, for your wisdom,
for your courage, for your power.
Help us respond to you in the week ahead as we lament the week behind.
“May the peace of God, my Father, rule my life in ev’rything,
that I may be calm to comfort sick and sorrowing.”

Through Christ our Lord.