A Prayer for the Season


Several years ago I sent this prayer to my campus at Thanksgiving.   I do not think we can be reminded of our own ability to change the world too often, so I am sharing it again with the hope that you find it as inspirational as I do.

We cannot pray to You, O God,

To banish war,

For You have filled the world with paths to peace,

If only we would take them.


We cannot pray to You

To end starvation,

For there is food enough for all,

If only we would share it.


We cannot merely pray

For prejudice to cease,

For we might see

The good in all that lies before our eyes

If only we would use them.


We cannot merely pray

‘Root out despair,’

For the spark of hope

Already waits within the human heart,

For us to fan it into flame.


We must not ask of You, O God,

To take the task that you have given us.

We cannot shirk,

We cannot flee away,

Avoiding obligation for ever.


Therefore we pray, O God,

For wisdom and will, for courage

To do and to become,

Not only to look on

With helpless yearning

As though we had no strength.  

Barbara ViniarComment