Our theme for the month of October was selected by readers and is a format challenge: write a post completely in dialogue.

 

Our Father, who art in heaven,

Even if words are more belief I can muster, let my breath become a prayer.

But oh my God, if You hold on,
You will find I’m glad You stayed.
(Penny and Sparrow)

hallowed be thy Name.

You are not like me—like us. Depends on the hour whether I’m furious about or grateful for that.

With shortness of breath, I’ll explain the infinite
How rare and beautiful it truly is that we exist.
(Sleeping at Last)

Thy Kingdom come.

The exhale to the inhale of news, assaults, attacks, thoughts, anxieties. The words come easier some days: election days, Wednesdays, those days where the world reveals all its ugliness at once.

The mighty kingdom of God is not yet here.
What if ‘rich’ did not have to mean ‘wealthy,’ and ‘whole’
did not have to mean ‘healed’?
What if being the people of “the gospel” meant that we are
simply people with good news?
(Kate Bowler)

Thy will be done

But I confess I would like to know it earlier. Or, I suppose, with more specifics.

If Your eye is on the sparrow
If You’re worried about the bird
Did You get all of my letters?
Did You read my troubled words?
(Branches)

on earth, as it is in heaven.

Eyes and mud, water and feet, wine and bread: why are the ingredients of miracles so ordinary?

The Lord is near.
(Philippians)

Give us this day our daily bread

Why do I miss the providence of small, earthy things? Of texts from friends, of the rhythmic hum beneath a cat’s fur, and the faint memory of rain on leaves.

He is there
sooner than our thought or prayer.
Searching backward,
we cannot discover how or get inside the miracle.
(Luci Shaw)

and forgive us our trespasses,

Let me not be too religious to ever grow or change.

We confess that we have sinned against you
in thought, word, and deed,
by what we have done,
and by what we have left undone.
 (The Book of Common Prayer)

as we forgive them that trespass against us.

Protect me from a human fear of anger but protect my anger from human fear.

Jesus weeps. And we should too.
It is time for some serious soul-searching,
brothers and sisters, for this should not be.
(Rachael Denhollander)

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Why do I dwell in a cycle of wrong silences and so-sure-I’m-right words?

May the hearing of the Holy Spirit be in these ears
May the smelling of the Holy Spirit be in this nose
May the vision that the People of Heaven have be in these eyes…
May this man belong entirely to God the Father.
(Prayer of St. Fursa)

For thine is the kingdom,

Press me towards rest when I long for control.

Consumerism only makes sense if the world is a
place where resources are scarce, where God can’t be counted
on to show up or provide for us.
(Mike Cosper)

the power, and the glory,

Teach me the quiet virtue of janitors and night stockers. Of saints who wake and sleep and live—and that is enough.

Work. Prayer. As with all of life, it is a rhythm:
tension, release; tension, release.
Work, discipline, obedience; pull the bow string taut,
and then let go. But it must be done daily.
(Madeleine L’Engle)

for ever and ever. Amen.

Amen.

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