Some years ago a clergy friend shared this prayer by John Bell of the Iona Community. It has helped me a lot in the past days.
You keep us waiting … you, the God of all time, want us to wait
For the right time in which to discover
Who we are, where we must go,
Who will be with us, and what we must do.
So thank you … for the waiting time.
You keep us looking … you, the God of all space,
Want us to look in the right and wrong places for signs of hope,
For people who are hopeless,
For visions of a better world which will appear
Among the disappointments of the world we know.
So thank you … for the looking time.
You keep us loving … you, the God whose name is love,
Want us to be like you –
To love the loveless and the unlovely and the unlovable;
To love without jealousy or design or threat;
And, most difficult of all, to love ourselves.
So thank you … for the loving time.
And in all this, you keep us.
Through hard questions with no easy answers;
Through failing where we had hoped to succeed
And making an impact when we felt we were useless;
Through the patience and the dreams and the love of others,
And through Jesus Christ and his Spirit, you keep us.
So thank you … for the keeping time,
And for now,
And for ever,