Images: Nina Bisognani and Barbara Ryther
A Psalm of Thanksgiving
In the morning when I rise
I sense my household come to life:
Water running, appliances working, the smell of fresh coffee wafting through the air
And I am grateful for the normal sounds of a normal day.
I open my eyes and give thanks that I am alive this day
Because deep in my heart I know that these simple acts on this day
Are Your blessing
Then, O God,
When I cry out to you, it is not in fear or sorrow, or pain, but in thanksgiving.
My days of quarantine have been filled with singing, with prayer, with the joy of being a part of a family.
Yes, there have been times when we have felt the confinement of this quarantine. We have not walked away from words said in anger or frustration, as once we would.
We shouted, caused tears, stormed out.
But You, O Lord, taught us to forgive. And so we have.
And, Lord, You, above all others, knew danger far more serious surrounded me.
I stood at the edge of the abyss, but I did not know it.
I did not fall into the pit.
I did not have the stroke waiting to befall me.
You sent people who cared about me: family, friends, doctors and nurses
The people who made the hospital safe for those of us who needed their help but did not have COVID.
You held me in your hands while they slowly, carefully, and sometimes annoyingly
Pushed me to seek help. Help I did not know I needed.
But You did.
And, I am alive.
By, Barbara Kautz
A Prayer Inspired by Psalms
The sun still rises every morning, but the texture of our lives has changed.
The air is filled with sickness; the earth a minefield of broken dreams.
Friends and loved ones have passed away. I fear there is more destruction ahead.
Grief stretches from family to family; across continents, along the corridor of a
pale-lit sky. At night, stars are dimmed by angry clouds heralding the pandemic’s
My heart is filled with sorrow; and longing for what once was.
I am a hollow vessel; a bird with a broken wing.
For so long have I cried out to you, to no avail. Each hour feels like a year.
What will happen as we try to come together again; as children return to school;
as we struggle to become one nation, one world united?
Sometimes I falter. Am I praying for the wrong things? Are you really there?
I begin to pray in the morning while still in bed, before the outside world
enters my troubled mind. I pray for strength, endurance, and your will for me.
In the depths of my being I believe you are listening.
Wednesday Eucharist in the memorial garden awakens my spirit. I feel a holy
presence in the simple setting of our worship there.
My soul takes refuge in your divine love.
I believe you will look after us all, until the storms have passed.
By, Nina Bisognani