Dear God, I have so long taken step after step as if in the dream, only waking occasionally. I blink and look around. How did I get here? Later, and fresh surroundings, I stop, blink, and ask again: And how did I get here, too?
Looking back each time I see faintly the trail of my footfalls. That must be where I walked, yet I remember not.
Lord, let me be awake for each step today, yea, even the most ordinary doings. You are with me at exalted times, at difficult times – and also at the most tedious times. Let me be awake to your presence persistently, constantly.
Dear God, streams of cool water flow beside me, available to me in my weariness. So many streams, each itself fed by one smaller, tributary and branch.
Lord, I seek your aid and support – and it comes from so many quarters.
Yet I walk on, blind to the relief available to me if I but look a little more closely. Finally I am spent, and sit. Immobile, I can see the cool water trickling around me.
Open my eyes, dear Lord. I await rescue, but you have already delivered all I need and more.
Dear God, faced with the most routine of tasks, I become fearful. I feel alone, facing armies who wish me ill.
In truth, it may be I who strike fear in others without knowing it. Let me be a friend to all today.
Bend my words and deeds to your will.
Dear God, I am like a blade on the whetstone. I am being honed, daily sharper. Each pass reveals a keener edge, by removing what is unnecessary.
For what do you prepare me, dear Lord? Am I to be used in the making of a great feast? The assembly of a sturdy chair? A child’s box?
Thank you, dear God, for the gift of persistence. Ever more sharp, let me become your instrument.
Dear God, if I stand still, I can hear the forest grow around me. The new leaves unfurl, new shoots press aside the soil to see light. I am one of many still growing.
What a miracle it is to look the world in the eye with equanimity!
Only yesterday, I blinked and looked away. Today my feet root into the ground and my face is mild. The wind blows my hair yet I do not turn my head.
O sweet Lord, let my roots grow stronger as the wind builds. You strengthened me yesterday for today’s storm.
Dear God, there is a well-worn path beside my dwelling. I walk it in the morning as I patrol the edges of my home area. Who made this path? Countless steps before me — but I, too, add my own.
This path leads to refreshment and the way is easy. I wear it smoother each morning.
But look! A branch has fallen in the night. I stop. The forest stands at my side. I hear song.
This pathway is convenience. Indeed I have infinite choice of direction if I but turn my feet.
Lord, let me hear your sweet song. Let me walk toward you even as you hide behind trees and take me into undiscovered meadows. These new grounds upon which I tread will wear smoother. Later, others may come to stop and wonder if they, too, might leave their path of convenience.
Dear God, I am seeking you. Let me not turn down blind alleys and look where I know you not to be. If I am to seek, let me do so where you may be found
O! How often do I fool myself through misdirected effort. I plow the fields in fallow land. I seek counsel from fools. I pile high tiny scraps of foil thinking it treasure.
Lord, let me do what is simple today. Show me where I am wasting my days.
Dear God, do I stand at a fork in the road? Let me see rightly. All these moment by moment choices – which are consequential?
Grant me persistence in seeking and doing your will. Grant me discernment over whether my choice is to go on or not – or whether my choice is to change my pathway.
I cannot see around the bend in this road. Grant me faith and willingness to walk forward nonetheless.
Dear God, let me see clearly today.
A meadow stretches before me: it is not a uniform green carpet. Let me see the edible leaves I seek.
I am assailed: let me hear the lesson being delivered.
Even in ease: let me see the gifts of your hand and thus build gratitude.
Let me be awake to what is truly happening around me.
Dear God, I beg you to let me live love, to bring love to my fellows. What, then, must I do? My thinking must be reordered. To live love, I must think love.
Let me harbor the kindest thoughts about all my fellows. Let me have forgiveness and compassion. Such a simple task, dear Lord. Yet so difficult.
Let this simple task burn away the gilding. My life and actions need not be ornate. The plain table will hold more than the carved and figured one, whose legs have been weakened by decoration.
Let me think simple love toward all today. Let me be the world’s steward.