Litanies, poems and prayers written for the local church.

ponderings... a blog sharing reflections of life and lectionary


Lenten Petition for Year B

We seek salvation through our power
Yet you hang your useless bow in the clouds.

We seek salvation through our progeny
Yet your lineage follows lines of faithfulness.

We seek salvation through our independence
Yet your commandments plead for accountability.

We seek salvation through our denial
Yet you hold forth the serpent and beckon us to look.

We seek salvation through our intellect
Yet your wisdom is written on our hearts.

We seek salvation through our heritage
Yet you invite us to make a journey of faith.

May your invitation to journey
overcome our comfort with the familiar.
Amen.

Notes for Lent Year B:
Lent is an ideal time to explore the tenets (and questions) basic to our faith. An alternative to the Lectionary readings (which follow), you might consider Lenten Symbols.

Lent 1 - Reflection on the Bow (Genesis 9:8-17)
The bow is hanging
upside down
lifeless
yet full of promise

The warrior stood erect
bow loaded
destruction
waiting to unfold

The object of rage
surprisingly insignificant
helpless
the arrow falls

Instrument built for destruction
hanging inverted
reclaimed
symbolic now of hope

Our lives are hanging
upside down
lifeless
yet full of promise


Lent 2 - Losing One's Life (Matthew 16:25)
Those who want to save their lives

have good health insurance,
pay their bills on time,
exercise and eat right

Those who want to save their lives
will lose them.

Those who lose their lives
in pursuit of God

who abandon the world's values,
who live generously and faithfully,
who listen to a voice beyond

Those who lose their lives
in pursuit of God
will find life.

May we learn the value of loss.
May we know the value of life.
Amen.

Confession (1997)

Awesome God,
when we catch sight of the totality of your claim on our lives;
our believing waivers.

When we hear the absurdity of your unbreakable covenant with us;
like Sarai and Abram, we laugh.

When we face the foolish wisdom of the looming cross;
like Peter, we suggest an alternative.

Meet us in our disbelieving, loving God,
move us gently into the deep waters of faith.

My Name (Genesis 17 and the concept of naming)

My name is a gift from my past
my name connects me to my father and his father before him.
My name is my mother's sisters.
My name was given to me in marriage.
My name was chosen for me.

My name describes me.
My name is familiar.
My name is comfortable.
except when my name no longer fits.
when my name is a stranger,
when my name pulls me to a past I must leave.
And then one day, God changed my name.

My name is 'faithful'.
My name is 'child of God'.
My name is 'believer'.
My name is 'beloved'.

Lent 3 - Commandments (Exodus 20 and Matthew 22)
Love the Lord your God
with all of your heart, your mind and your soul.

We will love God with an intensity
such that no substitute will suffice,
the very mention of God's name will be precious
as we cleave to our time of communion with the sacred.

Love your neighbor as yourself.

We will respect the wisdom of our elders.
We will protect the lives and the reputations of those around us.
We will cherish the relationships entrusted to us.
We will not take what is not ours.
We will learn the value of enough.

Love the Lord your God.
Amen.

Lent 4 - God's Love (1997)
For God so loved the world;
The sparrows, the mountain lions,
the fish and the people.

For God so loved the world;
In success and failure,
in sickness and health,
in mediocrity and extraordinary.

For God so loved the world;
Enough to become one of us,
enough to suffer along with us,
enough to offer new life for us.
For God so loved the world;
Let us worship God!

Lent 5 - Covenant (Jeremiah 31) (1997)
And God said,
I will put my law in them,

And so we come to worship
in search of the Author,

And I will write it on their hearts;

Opening our hearts,

And I will be their God,
and they shall be my people.

Finding communion.