By Rev. Rebecca Sumner, Adapted by Andy Wade
Lord, make us instruments of your peace.
Make me an instrument of your peace in Hood River, Odell, Parkdale, White Salmon, Bingen, the Gorge, your world.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where politics divide, where the poor are excluded, where people of other faiths and sexual orientations are threatened, harassed, and killed, help me to be a sower of friendship, acceptance, and love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where our Latino sisters and brothers live in fear of deportation and families are torn apart, where people of color fear the people and systems that should provide protection, and where Native peoples continue to go unrecognized by the government resulting in a lack of access to housing, water, and fishing rights, in all these places and more, help me to listen, seek forgiveness, and become an ally through the shalom work of God.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where people have given up on God because of the abuse and hypocrisy of God’s people, help me to restore faith by listening to their pain, seeking forgiveness, and cultivating deeper relationships.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where addiction, abuse, unemployment, lack of housing and other issues drags my neighbors into despair, help me to be a steadfast friend. Show me how to bring hope and healing to all those around me.
Where there is darkness, light.
For those in my community trapped by the prison system, help me to be a beacon of light, bringing hope, friendship, and possibility.
When destruction of God’s creation is rampant and it seems we’re moving toward irreversible crisis, help me to shine light on the possibilities to make a better world and to share examples of how it’s already happening.
Where there is sadness, joy.
Where people sit in loneliness and isolation, help me to see. Help me to make time to be a friend, to listen to stories of pain and grief, to be present without passing judgement or trying to fix them. Where grief overwhelms, let mine be the hand of love holding on together until joy returns.
Divine Master, help me to seek not my own comfort, but the comfort of others.
Help me to understand other’s as a pathway to being understood.
Help me to love others sacrificially as you love us.
For it is in giving to others and seeking for their best that we, ourselves, receive. It is in extending the hand of peace and forgiveness that we embrace a peace that comes to all,
And it is in dying to our own selfish interests in favor of the other that the Kingdom of God is unleashed in our midst.
What a wonderful adaptation! I loved it. All of it. We had a Family Peace Fest on Saturday, August 19 in Morton Grove, a multi-cultural suburb of Chicago. (I was one of the chief coordinators.) I fully affirm and endorse these sentiments in this post!