December mist

Our God,
December mist blankets our streets this morning.
It’s hard to make out detail at any distance.
The big picture fades into obscurity,
and we’re left with the immediate—
with what’s right around us.

Often, our God, we appropriately pray
for a greater sense of the bigger picture—
of the vastness beyond us
and the meaningfulness in immensity that eludes us.
We pray for the light to burn away the haze
that we might receive the perspective a bigger picture
offers us on our immediate.

But today, in the fog,
we don’t strain for what we can’t see.
We pray rather for the immediate.
We pray for what we’re dealing with right now.
We pray not for some great divine working out of your will
through countless acts of free will manifesting grace and love—
all part of the great and mysterious work of Your spirit.
We pray not for the redeeming of creation that is our calling.
No, we pray for the gasping struggle to breathe,
and the moments that take our breath away.
We pray for the fear of disease,
and the ways in which love casts out fear.
We pray for the aches and pain of our bodies,
and for the joys our bodies bring us.
We pray for the people we love who hurt us,
and the profound blessing of those who love us
in spite of everything.

Unable to distinguish the distance,
we pray the immediate today.
And we look for You, today, with us
in the here and now.
Not transcendent God today,
not divine redeemer,
not almighty judge.
Just (ha!)
loving presence of comfort and care.
Thank You.
Amen.

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