On Sunday mornings, the Narthex is often the place people ‘put in their orders’ for the week. They will shake my hand and request a visit or a call or a prayer. I’m always happy to oblige if possible. And of course, there’s the weekly request, “Could you send me a printed copy of the _________ (you fill in the blank: poem, prayer, story, song lyric) that was shared in worship this morning?” Again, if possible, I’m always happy to oblige…

Last Sunday, I shared a revised prayer — words of God to us — as imagined by Henri Nouwen. So many people requested a copy, I thought it would just be easier to print it here….

I have called you by name from the very beginning. You are mine, and I am yours. You are my beloved child, and on you my favor rests. I molded you in the depths of the earth and knit you together in your mother’s womb. I hold you in the palm of my hand, and I shelter you in the shadow of my embrace. I look at you with infinite tenderness and care for you with a care more intimate than that of a mother for her child. I have counted every hair on your head and guided you at every step. Wherever you go, I will go, and wherever you rest, I keep watch. I will give you food that will satisfy your hunger and drink that will quench your thirst. I will not hide my face from you. You belong to me. I am your father, your mother, your brother, your sister, your lover and your spouse. Wherever you are, I will be. Nothing will ever separate us. Nothing. We are one. Amen.

And I’ll even add my benediction as an added bonus…

Regardless of what you think or what anyone has told you, you are God’s beloved child. Go in His joy and in His peace. Amen.

— Jim