Dear God, my aims are so limited. More often than not, I seek only comfort, praise, and relief from fear. My goals arise out of my defects: sloth, pride, and fear. Lord, let me transcend this narrowness that shackles me.
The love you pour upon me is wasted on my meager plans. You grant unlimited power and with it I seek ways to gain the most trivial advantage.
My Lord, adjust my intentions. Let me meet your grand love with worthy objectives. Let me stand, with straight back, and stride through this day. I am neither beast, creature, slave, nor prisoner. I am your child. Your power and infinite love are my birthright.
Let me stop tinkering and fidgeting, building birdhouses and sand castles, but let me erect structures that match your magnificence. Lighthouses for my fellows, similarly blinded by self-delusion. Let us begin to see.
Dear God, can I sit still today? Can I slow my actions, my very movements? My thoughts? Let me feel every footfall, every sensation, every mood and idea that slips through my mind.
You have placed me, O Lord, in this moment. Now. You have filled it with gifts: sensations, thoughts, feelings. I willfully dismiss these and look instead to an imagined future, built by my own selfish fears or, alternatively, by my prideful musings. Or I look back at my dim past with both remorse and self-congratulation in equal measure.
Lord, let me inhabit this moment! You are here with me, now. The farther away from this moment I go, the more I burrow into yesterday’s and today’s fantasies, into the gossamer world around me, the farther I get from you.
Let me draw nearer to you. Let me see you in the small doings all around me, close in. Let me make a minute study of you. Let the small details of this moment crowd out the phantasms with which I so eagerly muddy my thought life.
Dear God, you see through me. You tear through my outer covering, my shell, as if it were tissue. My interior is so flawed yet you persist in loving me. You do not even ask me to change. You adore this lump of a human without condition.
And yet I dress myself up in self-delusion. Observing my interior, some days I despise whom I see, other days I am so proud of my piety. I gild my exterior, and I imagine you look on bemused.
All illusion. You see the truth and the truth is that I am your child, small and needing your love. Trembling in the cold rain. You wrap me in your warm arms. I need but feel them.
My fellows are equally needy. So small. You have graced me with awareness of your love for us shivering, frightened children. Let me tell others of this, nudging them and sharing the warmth you have inserted into my heart.
Let me share the good news: we inhabit a world of illusion. We are loved.
Dear God, on this fresh morning I shine like a new penny. Your wind fills my sails and I am urged forward.
Let me give more today, for you provide without limit. Energy, time, love, wealth. Let me pour a better attitude into every circumstance I encounter.
You have sent me, your agent, to deliver love and good cheer. So what of my trials and worries? The hotelier does not complain to the guest; the lifeguard does not bid the drowning to wait.
Let me beam love into every cranny and crag, warmth into every heart, kindness into every relation.
You strengthen me. Let me view this strength as an obligation, for you have given it without my deserving. Let me be a steward of it, holding it in trust for others, bestowing it without judgment. Let me keep nothing back.
More. Let me give more.
Dear God, I receive so much from you, untold blessings and bounty. Surely you do not mean for me to be miserly and hoard your treasures. Let me, therefore, give everything. Let me bestow your treasures, passing on the gift – peace. Love.
I am awake, O Lord. I see that love is at the center of it all. Let me awaken those around me.
Dear God, I have cried out to you so many times. The list of my pleas is long. Like a child, I ask and ask.
Lord, let me see clearly how you already have graced me with unimagined providence. I need not wait for some later satisfaction. Piled all around me are the gifts I need. My portion for the day is already in my hands. And yet I cry out for more, disguising greed under a cloak of weakness.
Let me arise, stand erect, stride forward with your power at my full disposal, your wind at my back.
I need not hope for some improved future. I already inhabit it. Let me recognize and give thanks for these treasures.
Dear God, my whole attitude and outlook upon life have changed. You have made me, slowly, inexorably, starting from the inside working out. Scraping away at the useless bits and superfluous pieces.
I am so very far from being whom you would have me be, from consistently acting as you would have me act. I am selfish, prideful, slothful. But in truth, I am far from where I used to be, too. You have placed me on the way.
O Lord, I have no choice but to keep walking forward, for I fear the tragedy if I were to turn back! Let me show and live gratitude for refashioning my life and existence.
Who am I? I am yours. Thank you for taking me.
Dear God, let me take single, slow steps today. You do not ask me to carry more than one day’s burden and I dare not try to carry tomorrow’s load for it may crush me. But so, too, must I look to this hour only, saving the next hour’s tasks for their time.
Step-by-step, Lord, you walk with me. I am like a wanderer walking a stony path: each footfall requires care lest I turn an ankle. I hold your hand, you light my way, you mark the safe course.
Lord, let me depend utterly on you in each moment. Let my devotion to each slow step crowd out worry over later challenges. Your grace will provide what I need, right now. Let me seek no more than that.
Dear God, test me. Afflict me. Let my dependence on you buoy me and lighten me no matter the weights piled atop me.
I feel your love so deeply – every worry, care, or misgiving I have is delivered by you to guide me away from yet worse trouble, and to impel me toward greater growth. Thus even my sorrows are joy.
Some days you shower me with feelings of happiness, others with hardship. Yet with my narrow view I cannot rightly discern which is which. Does this closed door stymie me, or is it saving me from calamity? Is this new opportunity my reward, or is it meant to test me? My perception is selfish, narrow, and I cannot see down the road further than the first turning.
Lord, bring me faith. Test me, that it may grow and carry me over greater obstacles. Let this strength, your strength, bring me deep serenity.
Dear God, let me cultivate silence. Let this reflect my devotion to you. Let me refrain from selfishly filling the world with ephemeral musings and childish realizations.
Let me have faith that you will fill all spaces that call for it. Let me not speak unless impelled by your clear hand.
Let me surrender this, my most treasured faculty, to you, as a sacrifice: let me withhold speech.