Response #11 Cockroaches

Gross, good one.

A Prayer for Dark Nights

There are many tangible and intangible things in my life that frighten me and make me anxious. When I lie in bed at night thoughts and feelings about these things arise in me and plague me. In the dark night and the dark times of my life I am afraid my courage and my faith might falter. Send your Holy Spirit to be with me. Come out at night. Skitter across the floor, surround me, tell me not to be afraid, tell me you are with me to the end of the age in… in the those dark moments, those nooks and crannies of my dark nights, like your creepy little creatures the cockroaches.

Amen

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Response #10 Acne

Mysterious Theologian: Ben

Alas, my 5 0’clock shadow does not cover my nose, which is where an eternal zit loves to sit.  See below.

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Almighty Acne, when I look into the mirror with either vanity or despair at the form I see, you grace me by welling up and blossoming on my skin. Remind me with your pimply presence that my worth comes not from the smoothness of my flesh but from the sacred oil of your Anointed with which you sealed the very core of my being forever with the cross of Christ. With your never disappearing love, Oh Zit, lead me to wash daily in the waters of baptism. Amen. 

Response #8 Stuffed Animals

Mysterious Theologian: Ben

Puffy

Puffy McKernan, 28 years old and still as beautiful as the day she was given to baby Elana.

Blessed are you, worn and dirty Stuffed Animal. When the night is dark and monsters lurk, you are my guardian who does not sleep.  When the fever comes and doctors leave, you are the healer who gladly soaks my sweat into your stitches.  When my parents fight and I flee to my room, you are the comforter who dries my tears with felted paws. When it is my birthday and I am alone, you are the guest who always comes to my party, eager to hide crumbs in your fur for later.  You smell of the shame of wet beds, the triumph of trees climbed, the joy of mud wallowed.  You are more precious to me than my final piece of candy, and yet when I met my very best friend, I will give you to that person.  Because you are love.  Amen. 

Response #7 Boogers

Mysterious Theologian: Chase

A Prayer of… Aaaachooo!… Thanks

God bless you… God. If that makes sense. You know me completely. I can hide nothing from you, yet you love me and I witness your grace all around me. I feel your grace through my friends and kind acquaintances who pretend not to notice the embarrassingly human things about me. Or who, unable to ignore my foolishness, are able to laugh the pangs of embarrassment away with me. Send more angels like these to me, I’ve got a lot of embarrassingly human tendencies, habits, and um, disgraces.

Amen

Response #6 Fingernails

Mysterious Theologian: Ben

First of all, Chase…maybe you should talk to someone about your relationship with fingernails…

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Oh Sacred Fingernail, just as you formed the letters on the tablets of stone given to Moses, so too you traced every detail of my being into the dust which you gave life.  In your own image, you gave me fingers with which to caress and examine your creation.  Protect their tips from doors slammed in anger, trunks closed in thoughtlessness, and boxes dropped in weariness. Scrape away my fear, that like Thomas’s finger, I too may venture into the wounds of injustice in your resurrected and incarnate love.  And when anxiety overwhelms me, let me chew on the truth that you are always at my fingertips and taste all the places through which you have journeyed with me. Amen.

Response #5 Snow Sludge

Mysterious Theologian: Chase

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A Prayer of Sludge and Snow

God, the snow doesn’t start out grimy. Neither do I. Snow becomes grimy. And so do I. On Sunday your word falls on me and the world becomes clear and bright. I feel renewed, cleansed, and capable of doing your will. But by Monday I am tired. By Tuesday I am annoyed. By Wednesday I am disgusted. By Thursday I am broken. By Friday I am desperate and by Saturday I am in doubt. Stay with me God. Send me, each day, the word that reveals your reign in this world and shake the sludge off of me. Give me vision, give me hope, and give me the power to see and do your will throughout the week.

Amen.

Response #4 Smog

Mysterious Theologian: Benimage

Oh omnipresent Smog, though you formed me to filled with your pure Spirit, in my ignorance and greed I have corrupted your life-giving breath.  In your mercy you show yourself as a pillar of toxic cloud that I may see the sin which chokes my soul and be led out of the industrial wasteland that I have built. Guide me to no longer consume the fuels of fossilized death, but set me on fire with your Holy Spirit, that others may see my clear light and give you praise.  Amen.

Response #03 Gastroenteritis

Mysterious Theologian: Chase

Invisible Gastro God, I have heard that it is not what goes in the mouth but what comes out that counts. Hide yourself in all that I consume, whether at the food truck for lunch or at the altar for communion. Enter into me deeply and twist me up. Surprise me explosively for days with thoughts, words, and actions inspired by you. Wear me down and replace my pain with greater peace through every outburst. Make me apologize to my friends saying, “I’m sorry, it’s just… I’ve got God poisoning.”

Amen.

Response #02 The Blobfish

The Mysterious Theologian: Ben

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Prayer to God Revealed in the Blobfish

Oh Mysterious Blobfish, your true form is beyond my knowing,

For I but stand on the surface of the vast ocean of my soul,

And you dwell in my depths,

Uncrushed by the pressure I place on myself,

Waiting patiently for me to dive in,

And swim into your ever-waiting smile.

Give me the courage to take that plunge.

Amen.