Wednesday Prayers: Crisis

White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel once (in)famously said, "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste."

It pissed off lots of people. Not me. And not just because I think he's dead sexy admire his work. I agree with his point. Every crisis can be a catalyst. A crisis is something we didn't want, something painful, something overwhelming-- but it's also a potential turning point. Where we (I) get stuck is in wanting to go back to pre-crisis. Not possible. Never possible. Crisis changes us. Even if our actions don't change, our insides do. Crisis gives us a choice between changing, and living a lie.

But we didn't want the change.

We might not have wanted the tide to come in, either, but clearly there's a lot that's beyond our control.

Family members die, marriages come unraveled, jobs end, sickness comes. We cannot go back to where we were before. The best we can hope for is to grow in ways that we wouldn't have if we could have stayed in that comfortable place.

I am in the midst of a couple quiet crises. I can't control the outcomes, but I can grow in my responses. This week, I'd like your prayers-- not that the crises be taken away, but that I choose to become more fully who God created me to be in the midst of them. That I choose (and learn) integrity and truth. That I seek God above easy familiarity. That I work with as God to create something new.
I yearn to be held
in the great hands of your heart--
oh let them take me now.
Into them I place these fragments, my life,
and you, God-- spend them however you want.
--Rainer Maria Rilke
How about you? Would you like me to offer prayer through your own crisis?


  1. It's eerie, your posts have become more and more timely in my life as I have followed you over the past year or so.

    I am going through a quiet crisis. I will pray for you through yours.

    You are right, of course, that though we may wish it, we can't go back to life pre-crisis. To avoid the crisis and what it is telling us about our situation(s) and ourselves WOULD be living a lie. [sigh]

    May God bless you.

  2. I can do that. I am honored that you ask people to pray for you.

    If you need anything at all, just hollar.

  3. Honored to pray you through your crises as you have so often for me....And here if you need to talk about it.

    My present need is a happy but still nervous making one: leading/faciliating the conversation about inclusive and expansive language and God-images to the local spiritual directors' network tomorrow. Remaining steps include finishing up Sophia's Book of Hours today (presently being printed out after proofreading); printing out and taking to Staples for binding, as many copies as reasonably possible; prepping the handouts and my inner self; and getting through the set up and event itself with as much joy and peace as possible!

  4. Yes, you may pray for us as we unfold into our new life. more to say, but needs to be said some where else first.

    peace be with you my friend.

  5. Sally: What a happy accident (and not, I suppose, as we both seem to be dealing with difficult things) to be traveling a similar road with you. Blessings on you, too-- you were in my prayers this morning.

    Mindy: You're a sweetheart, and thank you. Glad to ask for prayers, glad to pray for everybody. It's the only thing that keeps me from becoming a complete crank (and sometimes, it doesn't work).

    Laura: I so appreciate your prayers. Your transitions are in mine-- I'm really astounded at all that you're exploring. It's a gift to be able to watch this phase of your ministry unfold.

    Stratoz: You've got it, and I'm looking forward to seeing whatever your next step is.


"So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was."
-Saint Molly Ivins