prayer for this cultural moment.

Stanley Hauerwas: A Prayer for Our Enemies As We Are All Learning How to Hate




 Stanley Hauerwas’ Prayers Plainly Spoken. It’s a short book that was marketed more like devotional reading than like the all-out cultural subversion it self-consciously is. Hauerwas brings all of his theological and philosophical means to bear in a set of colloquial, occasional, humorous, and insightful prayers for just about any occasion you could think of. Turns out he has a perfect prayer for this cultural moment. I hope this will serve us all well today:

Forgiving Lord, I do not want my enemies  forgiven. I want you to kill them (as sometimes prays the psalmist!)

Actually, I would prefer to pray that you punish them rather than kill them, since I would like to watch them suffer. Also, I fear losing my enemies, since my hates are more precious to me than my loves. If I lost my hates, my enemies, how would I know who I am?

Yet you have bent us toward reconciliation, that we may be able to pass one another Christ’s peace. It is a terrible thing to ask of us. I am sure I cannot do it, but you  are a wily God able to accomplish miracles. May we be struck alive with the miracle of your grace, even to being reconciled with ourselves.



I love this!!
//The surest way to resist the lure of hatred is to desire something else even more—something like love, vulnerability, forgiveness, justice, peace, and the kingdom of God. Only the disciplined pursuit of these kinds of humanizing virtues can controvert the onslaught of hate-training that now saturates our culture.//

To My Evangelical Brothers & Sisters: Trump is Our Biggest Mistake & Our Greatest Opportunity




//I think our biggest problem is that Progressive Christians and Conservative Christians have let their ideology lead them and not their theology. We’ve modified a noun, Christian, that needs no modification. There is so much hatred and vitriol regarding Trump that I’m hard pressed to believe that most pray for the president. I am not a fan but I pray for him as I have for every other president.//


//Perhaps the fear of becoming the scapegoat oneself is at the center and heart of my worst fear. I have watched documentaries where the Jews were being loaded onto cattle cars and sent off off to concentration camps. One’s future as a scapegoat is certain. Witnessing atrocity, suffering, loss of status, loss of everything and everyone one has loved and one’s own hideous death at the hands of the totalitarian State. I have imagined myself one of those people who are becoming pure naked Humanity reduced to a number. I have imagined myself the subject of a Nation who sees me as one of the “unnecessary eaters”. I’m glad I’m not that. Yet.
What does the first shall be last and the last shall be first mean? What does when I am weak then I am strong mean in Practical terms? I still have material possessions, and people that love me. a comfortable life really!! I have depression that brings me down to that last breath of Life on a daily basis in my imagination. The point where I feel i am nothing I suffer an atrocity of emptiness and my soul has been murdered. that anxiety never seems to pass. when it does pass I fear it will return. I know it will return!! Lately I have been inspired by the Holy Spirit not to fear this experience. I sense that it’s exactly at that point I no longer own myself and I am “in him”. It seems to be the launch point for amazing meditations lately!!//



Author: charlesburchfield

I am an artist working primarily with collage.

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