A prayer for seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, or any time we don’t understand

God.

We don’t understand.

Those words describe someone’s heart at any given moment somewhere in this hospital.
We don’t understand why the treatment isn’t working. Or why it is working.
We don’t understand why they are still together after 68 years. Or why this relationship isn’t working.
We don’t understand why so many things are happening to us right now.
We don’t understand what the next step is, what you are trying to do here, why you took their child, his joy, her pain.

We confess that we don’t understand.
It’s not a sin to not understand. I say that all the time.
We confess means we acknowledge, we agree with you.
But we confess that we often don’t agree with you, and we’re upset.
We confess that we don’t understand why you told Hosea who to marry.
Because, we confess, we judge her for her choices.
We confess that we’ve made assumptions about Gomer, about you, about people all around us, assumptions about bad motives and unjust behaviors.

We confess, we acknowledge, that we get upset with you when you don’t explain yourself, justify yourself, do what we think would be best.
We confess that when we don’t understand, we ignore you and make up our own answers.
We confess that we forget that you have power and forgiveness, understanding and compassion, both the desire and the direction to grow us.

We don’t understand why you care about us or where that care will take us or how this particular part of the story will turn out or who you are helping us become.

For today, help us be strengthened by understanding that when we don’t understand, you understand that. And love us.

Through Christ our Lord we are with you.

Amen.

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Hosea 1:2-10; Colossians 2:6-19

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"God. We Need You.": A Year of Prayer in a Hospital Chapel. Copyright © 2020 by Jon C Swanson. All Rights Reserved.

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