Don't Distance Yourself From The World
Throughout Holy Week I'll be sharing some prayers from a book I've been using as a prayer guide through Lent: Prayer: Forty Days of Practice. I hope that these prayers and the reflections that accompany them will be meaningful to you as we journey with Jesus through Holy Week.
Prayer for Monday of Holy Week:
May my disappointments in myself and others lead me to hope for and work for change rather than lead me to distance myself.
There's almost nothing worse than when someone lets us down, disappoints us or betrays us--especially when that person is close to us, a loved one or even someone we admire greatly.
Perhaps the only kind of disappointment that can feel worse is when we let ourselves down.
We've all been there. It's when we make promises to ourselves we don't keep... or we stumble on our own pride and fall flat on our face... or we find ourselves in a situation where we've allowed our values to be compromised...
These kinds disappointments--the ones that come from moments of weakness or exploited vulnerability---can weigh on us like a heavy burden for seasons of our lives, maybe even for years.
And if we allow those burdens to define who we are, we also allow them to define and shape our self-talk in horribly negative ways. We can actually come to believe that we aren't worthy of joy, incapable of real happiness, deserving of punishment.
It's then that we can also start to distance ourselves from others... and even begin to withdraw from the world, fearful that we'll be placed in situations where there is a risk of failure.
The prayer today is one that calls us to Jesus' side as he takes one step and then another toward a confrontation with evil and injustice for the sake of truth, beauty and goodness.
The prayer invites us to engage the world with the kind of love that casts out fear---the love of the Divine, shared through the Christ and present with us in the Spirit. A love that changes everything.
May the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.