a lenten prayer for reconciliation

robert peters


prayer:  spend a few moments with me now in a lenten prayer for reconciliation 

shall we pray

in the dawning of a new morning … 

… in the first rays of christ light

we seek the humility to acknowledge, 

that while we know a great deal about who we are …  

we know very little about the deeper mystery that our identity arises out of. 

we know little about the fluidity of the earth’s core – or the shallow mantle that feeds and sustains us. 

we know little about the turning of the earth that creates the illusion that it is the sun that rises in the morning.

and we know little about the injustices that have been inflicted on others or inflicted on the land we live on- in the journey that has brought us into this place and time …  

the injustices and the assumptions of the past that have left us with the opportunity to gather in this way … on this day. 

during this period of lent - we reflect on mysteries so incomprehensible … 

we who are living creatures …

       scurrying about on a giant marbled blue ball that floats on an ocean of darkness

living creatures who …

       attach skyscrapers to a thin crust of earth that rests on a molten moving core

living creatures who don’t even know how their own personal identity bubbles up mysteriously from the invisible and gives them character and form or thoughts and opinions.

and in this collection of all that we do not know … we are safe in our understanding  that all that exists … rests in the compassionate hand of god… as if our uncertainty and god’s assurance form the foundation (the crucible) and the sanctuary of human life. 

we pray that you will:

help the illusions we have created - fade in the illumination of christ’s light! 

we pray that you will:

help us to examine our own fears and desires, in the light of christ.

help us to examine the past indiscretions of our culture in light of our indigenous neighbours- who we hope will one day, no longer lived divided amongst us but us with them in their offer of communion as they communed with the land. 

help us acknowledge the treaty land that we worship on

        to recognize commitments that were not kept

but help us acknowledge also … 

that by imposing ownership of territory

on those who lived in communion with the land … 

we furthered our indiscretion

and perpetuated the deeper arrogance of a cultural assumption.  

and so it is that we acknowledge not only our failure to meet the conditions of an imposed treaty … as well as the imposition of ownership

but we also acknowledge the cultural arrogance that denied and shadowed the existing and inherent aboriginal wisdom and the damage this arrogance inflicted on the women who were the traditional guardians of the earth … 

… those who lived in deeper communion with these prairie foothills we now call home. 

help us to see into these past injustices in the light of the christ-lamp 

in the light of truth, in the light of reconciliation, and in the joy and communion with one another and the created universe. 

and as we reflect during this period of lent, help us to recognize that many of the patterns we live by – are not your patterns … that many of our ways are not your ways. help us to recognize the simple yet systematic errors we live by - 

    –being mindful that the sun does not rise over the horizon of the earth in the morning … it is the earth that turns to greet it … making us mindful … that we too, need to turn ourselves to the living light and away from the incandescent bulbs we have created to illuminate our illusions in the dark places cast by our shadows. 

and so we pray … that in our reflections and abstinences, and penance … and our personal preparation and journey into the sanctuary of this lenten season, we pray that the distractions that bind us to the everyday assumptions can be left behind, so that the call to the light of christ will dawn on the reconciliations for healing … in ourselves, with our neighbours, and with those whose territories were open fields of creation spoiled along the way by simple constructs of the mind such as ownership or a separate and an independent  ‘me’. 

we pray that during this time of lent, during this time of reflection … we will turn – like the earth, to meet the light of reconciliation with others, with ourselves in god’s compassionate being.   

lord, bless these people

and make them a blessing

into the world. amen