Prayer for a Time Such As This
There are moments and seasons which seem to carry a weight of burden. This seems to be such a season. Natural disasters continue to destroy people’s lives which they have taken care to build. Social and political discourse erode at common decency that people interact with one another. Wars and conflict decimate countries, communities and lives with physical battles rather than measured negotiation.
As one individual I want to cry out for an end to struggle in so many ways. The Psalmist writes several times, “How long, O Lord, how long?” Paul goes so far in the letter to Romans to offer that “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words” (Romans 8:26). And so I offer this this prayer from Desmond Tutu suggesting God’s voice calling creation back to the Garden of Eden. As you read this prayer, ask God to lead you to the path home, Eden.
How far are you from Eden? Which is the road home?
Come, child, I will show you.
See there, the path of humility, the road of sorrows spoken,
the way of “sorry” said? That way leads to Eden.
Do you see the path of pride?
The road trodden flat, marked out by the ones who cannot be contrite,
the stiff-necked road of harsh, loud voice?
It passes far from Eden with a mountain between to shelter it from sight.
How far are you from Eden?
When you have worn out the way of remorse
and retraced the path of repentance,
When you have pointed out the road for home
and pulled others onto the path,
Then you will know Eden is not far from you.