O God, there is so much in our hearts today.
This weekend, there is profound respect and gratitude
as we honor those who have given their lives
in the service of our nation.
This week, there is heart-wrenching, bitter grief,
as we mourn the deaths of 19 innocent children
and two beloved teachers in Uvalde, Texas.
Words fail us, O God.
Words fail us, in times like these.
Words fail us, but you do not.
Even in these heart-wrenching days,
we hold to your promise
that you will never fail us nor forsake us.
We come to you, trusting that you embrace all who mourn.
We come to you, remembering that you yourself know
what it means to lose a child to senseless violence,
for Jesus, your innocent, only-begotten child,
died on a cross.
Even then, your love for this troubled world never wavered.
Words fail us, O God, but you do not.
Even when we walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
your presence comforts; your words guide;
and your Spirit gives us strength to take the next step.
And so, we come to you today,
grateful for the depth of your love.
We come to you, at a loss for words,
yet still trusting in your Apostle’s words of assurance:
“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come …,
nor anything else in all creation,
will be able to separate us from the love of God
in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
A Prayer for Peace
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace:
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
* Peace Prayer attributed to St. Francis of Assisi.