This prayer is for God’s healing, saving, & delivering power to be known throughout the earth, to all peoples and nations. In many ways the reality that this prayer will be answered is the message of Jesus’ coming. John 3 tells God so loved the world that God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but to save it. In Jesus, God has cast God’s lot with the world – each and every one of us who are a part of this world, and all creation. By taking on blood, and bones, and skin, in becoming one of us God intertwined our world’s future with God’s own, so that God’s future is bound up in our future and our future in God’s. It is like a woman who chooses to become a mother. She chooses to have a new life enter her body, and casts her lot with the new life forming in her womb so that her future is bound u in that child’s future just as that child’s future is bound up in hers. In Jesus God has begun to answer this prayer by placing our life in the life of God.
There is a part of me when I screw up or even have trouble telling which way to go feels a fear gripping me. As a child I grew up hearing God was different than this God of love Jesus reveals, a God quick to cast me off and declare me a failure, damaged goods, if I failed to live up. And there were so many rules how could I avoid missing something? Yet this prayer reveals the heart of God, the heart Jesus embodied – a God who will not give up on a one of us, a God who has in fact made it so that God cannot. For, by casting God’s lot with us all by becoming a part of creation, God has made it so that to turn God’s back on us is to turn God’s back on God’s self. I need not fear being rejected by God, being cast off. I can live in hope, knowing that God is as near to me as the air that I breathe. If I can but learn to breathe in this surrounding presence of Christ like life-giving air through raising my mindful awareness of Christ’s leading, more and more those parts of me which do not reflect God’s best for me will begin to shed away being transformed more into Christ-likeness.
Yet this prayer also is something that, because God threw God’s lot in with us by becoming one of us in Jesus, I can know God will answer for the whole world. God will not give up on us despite our greed, willingness to cause each other harm, to overlook the poor, to pollute our earth. Ultimately God will continue to work to heal, reconcile, and make right what is broken. This is why sister Julian of Norwich could in her meditations see the world like a tiny nut held in the hand of Jesus, and hear him whisper not to worry despite despite the darkening she saw about her in the Middle Ages of Europe for what God makes, God loves. What God loves, God sustains. What God sustains, God heals so it need never be destroyed. “All shall be well”, she heard Jesus whisper, “all manner of thing be well”.
I believe that this prayer, and God coming to us in Jesus, shows us that this promise Julian said is true – God will not give up on us or our world. All will be well.
We don’t see all well yet. Yet we can trust.
A part of that trusting is realizing we are called to join Jesus in this work of healing the broken world. We are called become God’s partners in helping answer this prayer. Each of us have some way, small or large, we can help affect that transformation in our sphere of influence. I am reminded this morning of my need to face into my becoming hardened to this world, insensitive to its pain, and instead to look and listen for needs around me so I can be the presence of healing to myself and others through Jesus.
How do you do this in your life?
Let it be so. Amen.