Out of the clutter I cry to you, O Lord. From behind the heaps of excess and yellowing stacks of good intentions, from beneath the mound of past mistakes counted and recounted and old regrets still dripping with guilt, I call to you. I am weary from the load of grudges inordinately treasured; and my eyes ache from numbering the sins of others. I have carried it all too far and far enough.
Clear it away, O Lord, I pray.
Out of the clamor I cry to you, O Lord. Lord, hear my voice! When the noise imposed and self-imposed deafens me, O God, shout to me in a still, small voice. Listen through the electronic drone that distracts me from myself and from you, I plead, and pay heed to the groans that would be prayers. When I choose chatter and pleasant platitude over genuine conversation and concern, open my ears, O God, to the voice of the other and the plea uttered from behind the words.
Lord, hear my prayer and heal my hearing.
Out of the drivel I cry to you, O Lord, out of the pablum that passes for information and the cynicism that mocks wisdom, out of the spite that calls itself righteousness, the venom that calls itself wit, the meanness that calls itself honesty, the insult that calls itself advice, my soul calls out, O Lord. Create in me new words, I pray, and the wisdom to be silent. Let me speak truth with healing mercy. Let me speak grace with honest concern.
Fill my words with your Word, O God.
Out of time, I cry to you, O Lord. From amid the lines of my calendar that governs my days and the lines on my face that measure them, I call out to you. Awakened by mounting years and dwindling dawns, I confess I have planned my life for Someday, swearing allegiance to the necessary while neglecting the moment-wrapped gift. Reveal to me anew, O God, the hymn of laughter, the sacrament of tears, the liturgy of conversation, the congregation of friends and the sermon to be found in a whisper, unannounced and unplanned.
Lead me into this moment and to yourself, O God of all eternity.
If you, O Lord, should count our sins, Lord who could stand? But there is forgiveness with you, so that you may be revered. My soul waits for you more than those who watch for the morning, more than those who watch for the morning. Amen.