A penitent prayer

My Lord God,

I come to you at the end of Lent and at a time of great change and anxiety in my life to ask you for forgiveness for my self-centered attitude and lack of perspective.

I have whined about ending my internship when I should have thanked you on many occasions for the blessings upon blessings I have received from a congregation and a priest that have changed my life forever and I have come to love dearly.

I have complained about returning to my beloved and supportive home church family when I should be praying for those who have no spiritual home.

I have been cranky about financial aid and application paperwork when I should have been grateful for your never ending guidance through the priesthood process.

I have nagged and criticized my husband when I should have instead praised his never wavering support and patience.

I have been cynical about academia in general and seminary in particular when I should be thankful for the opportunity to pursue full time advanced study in one of the most amazing cities in the world.

I have obsessed about what should be done to raise the selling price of my house when I should have been grateful that selling it will mean entering seminary free of debts from credit cards and car loans with money to spare.

I have been negative about the expected size of my student apartment when I should have been conscious of those who have nowhere to stay each night.

I have gleefully counted each day left at my job with thoughts of “good riddance” in my mind when I should have been glad to have a good income, solid benefits, and supervisors who have given me the time off as needed in the course of the priesthood process.

I have moaned about giving away my material possessions when I should have been thinking of who could use what I have and do not need.

I have whimpered about my lack of sleep, seasonal allergies and common cold while others have been fighting terminal illness.

I have grumbled about my neighbors’ tendencies to leave their trash cans out too long or let their dogs bark at mine instead of noticing that I live in a clean, quiet, attractive, and safe neighborhood.

And the list goes on.

Oh Lord, help me to regain perspective and remember that I am answering a call from You. Forgive me for being negative and thinking it’s all about me.

Amen.

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~ by Sophia on April 5, 2006.

5 Responses to “A penitent prayer”

  1. 🙂

  2. Oh, yes, amen, amen. I identify way too strongly with this prayer! Thanks for putting it into graceful words.

  3. …so are you hanging in there? Isn’t it hard to be in such a state of limbo? We’re dealing with real estate agents and decluttering and such; meanwhile, I STILL haven’t gotten my official letter of postulancy. I know it’s pro forma in this diocese if the COM gives you the thumbs up, but it’s still stressful. I’m trying to offer it up to God during this week of Christ’s Passion and death, but I’m a poor excuse for a Christian right now.Know that you’re not alone, dear. We will survive this!BTW, are you planning on going to that lovely seminary in Chelsea?

  4. sophia, I dropped in here in response to your comment on my blog, but also because I wanted to send you hugs for this miserable transition time…re the question of reserved Sacrament…yes, in my sort of “High” Anglican church this is definitely an option, but at St M’s the Sacrament is kept in an aumbrey in the side chapel…so it’s fine if you run out when you are administering Communion at that altar, but not so easy if you are at the High Altar and your servers have gone into a holy daze! Nothing is ever staightforward, is it?!

  5. Mibi,I am hanging in there, more or less! 🙂I keep reminding myself to do one thing at a time, one day at a time…Yes, it is (God willing) going to be Chelsea Square. That seems like a good place to meet up with some RevGals in real life… I’m not officially “in” yet b/c it has taken forever to gather application materials, but I’ve been in touch w/ the folks in admissions and they know I’m applying. I’ll feel SO much better when that is settled.Kathryn,Oh, I see. I was just wondering – I’m always trying to learn more about the ways different churches approach the same issue. At Church by the Creek I always think I know how they will approach something (a Palm Sunday procession, for example) and I almost always guess wrong. 🙂 So much for me to learn!

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