We have been focusing on prayer during our weekly Solace Zoom meetings this week. A common experience we shared about prayer is that many of us, me included, tend to find ourselves repeating what we pray for when we offer personal prayers. Examples of other well written prayers help to stretch our theological imaginations and see what is hidden right before our very eyes.
Recently, Allison Shearouse shared with us a marvelous prayer resource entitled Pandemic Prayerbook which is edited by Darcy Wiley. We prayed this first prayer in the Pandemic Prayerbook and our eyes were opened and our prayers deepened. Below is that prayer and I hope you will pray it today.
AS I WASH MY HANDS: A Prayer for Faith & Sanity
As I wash my hands, 20 seconds,
I think of the raw, over-sanitized skin
of hospital staff.
Circling soap over knuckles and palms,
I think of the gloved hands
of grocery clerks and restaurant workers.
Cleansing under fingernails and past the wrists,
I think of the aged hands of my grandmothers
in nursing homes that I hope are free of germs.
As I wash my hands, faucet flowing,
I think of the clear air above halted cities,
the clear waters of Venice canals,
how the world looks when we are quiet and grounded,
how sand and mud and toxins settle when we shelter in place.
As I wash my hands,
interlacing my fingers in a prayer,
I think of the work that is paused
or the work that is increased.
Lather, water, clarity,
now your work is more visible
in the world and in me.
You desire clean hearts,
Wash us with water
and your Word.
Present us to yourself a radiant Church,
A model of holy sanity,
as we wash our hands.
Written by Darcy Wiley