A Prayer of Remembrance

God of all creation,

Father of life and love and truth,

Our One and only Master,

Your grace, mercy, and peace have sustained us through these days.

We have been touched by deep sorrow and burning anger.

Our hearts have been shaken.

Our lives have been bruised.

We have looked into our times as a mirror

And the reflection we have seen has made us shudder.

In fear and emptiness,

We have walked among the ruins and felt alone.

Yet we were not alone.

Weeping among the wretchedness of burning embers,

You were there.

It was but a glimpse through the rising smoke, but …

We saw Your Son

Still weeping at the grave of Lazarus,

Still mourning with those who grief tears at their souls.

You were there, reconciling the world unto Yourself.

There, You stood with us, there.

We can only faintly remember now the laughter

Of our fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, friends, and companions,

Silenced by the violent hand clasped across their pale blue lips.

We mourn them and we remember.

And Jesus weeps.

We have nearly lost the vision of his smile, the warmth of her embrace.

We mourn them and we remember.

And Jesus weeps.

We find it hard to hear the sound of that once familiar voice,.

It is impossible to be comforted by that once constant presence.

We mourn, we remember, we weep and He weeps with us.

We shall not forget and You shall not forget.

We consecrate that place in our hearts …

That sacred space that is more enduring than any earth-bound memorial.

There we shall be nurtured by memories,

Challenged to be more than we are,

Yet accepted as we are,

Consoled by the thoughts of those whom You also hold dear in Your heart,

For You are there also and there we see Jesus, weeping.

He is weeping and laughing and weeping …

And lifting us up beyond our reach.

There we meet Jesus speaking truth to our spirits,

“I am,” says He, “I am the resurrection,”

He assures us, “I am the resurrection and the life.”

“Believe in God, believe in me.”

And there, in that place of tears,

He paints a picture Of His Father’s house.

And there, He extends His hand,

His way, truth, life hand,

His loving, bleeding, wounded hand,

His tear-stained, blood-stained, tender hand,

His strong and steady hand of grace,

Ands we take it …

Confused, unsure, trembling, we take that hand.

Lord, we take Your hand, knowing nothing but Your love.

And taking Your hand, we hear You ask,

“May I have this dance,”

And we embrace life

And our feet begin to move to the rhythm of wonder

And we remember them with whom we also danced through life

And weep and laugh and dance and dance and dance

In memory

In tribute

In love.

God, for those who are yet broken,

Bring healing.

For those who are bitter,

Show mercy.

For those who are jaded and cynical,

Grant great grace.

For those who are laboring under guilt,

Hold forth the gift of repentance and forgiveness.

For those who are misguided, blinded, and battered,

We pray for a vision of your truth.

For those who are at war within,

Give peace.

For those who walk in the darkness of hate,

Shine.

For those who are dead inside,

May resurrection take its rightful place …

As their prevailing reality.

We yet weep … and Jesus weeps.

We yet mourn … And He mourns.

We remember …

And He never forgets.

Thank You for the gift of their presence

For even such a short while

And for their enduring memory.

Amen.

© 2002, Tom Sims (all rights reserved – permission granted to distribute with this notice)

Amen.

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