On a Garden that Needs Tending

 

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace…


 

I’ve been thinking about the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis. It occurs to me that it is a fitting inspiration as I learn how to coexist in a culture nearing midnight.

All around us we hear of violence and antagonism; of dispute and discouragement. Time and again I feel like “throwing my hat into the ring” on some of it.  I want to make my opinion known. Fight for the right, you know? I recently did just that and then regretted it. I’ll talk about that next time.

Seriously, what good will it do to stake out my position in a society that is coming unraveled? Particularly when my own garden here in “God’s Kingdom coming” needs tending. While the world outside blusters and blows, shouldn’t we be the calm in the storm?

St. Francis does a good job of outlining our job here between heaven and earth:

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.

Amen.

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