Thursday, June 18, 2009

Not at our beck and call

As planned, I closed last evening with more of the prayers of Walter Bruggemann. As anticipated, they spoke again to and from the deep places of my life. And I have another to share with you this morning, as I head (with exhaustion) into what promises to be a very busy day.

Not at our beck and call

We call out your name in as many ways as we can.
We fix your role towards us in the way we need.
We approach you from the particular angle of our life.
We do all that, not because you need to be identified,
but because of our deep need,
our deep wound,
our deep hope.
And then, we are astonished that while our names for you
serve for a moment,
you break beyond them in your freedom,
you show yourself yet fresh beyond our utterance,
you retreat into your splendor beyond our grasp.
We are - by your freedom and your hiddenness -
made sure yet again that you are God...
beyond us, for us, but beyond us,
not at our beck and call,
but always in your own way.
We stammer about your identity,
only to learn that it is our own unsettling
before you that wants naming.
Beyone all our explaining and capturing and fixing you...
we give you praise,
we thank you for your fleshed presence in suffering love,
and for our names that you give us. Amen.

(From "Awed to Heaven, Rooted in Earth" by Walter Bruggemann)