Dogs at the Table

...or to put it another way, "Perish, priest!"

Monday, December 03, 2012

And so now I'm praying...

People who know me well know that my theology of prayer goes something like this:  Prayer is not magic, and the purpose of prayer is not to instruct God, but to be open to God's purposes as they may unfold in my life.  When I intercede on behalf of others, it is not as some sort of lobbyist to the divine, but to open myself to being some sort of an answer to the prayer that I dare to ask -- for instance, I think it hypocritical to pray for healing unless one has signed a donor card or donated blood or contributed to a hospital foundation or volunteered as a visitor or driver for someone who is ill or infirmed.

But I find myself as a candidate in an episcopal election, living in the few days between the "walkabout" -- a visit to the diocese to greet the synod delegates, tour the diocesan office, meet the staff, and spend some time on the road to develop a sense of what the diocese is like -- and the election itself which will take place in five days.

And so I am praying.  But I am empty as to the purpose of my prayer.  And I am fearful of the outcome.  If I am not elected, I fall back into the easy comfort of my present incumbency, where I fear I am past my best-before date.  If I am elected, I will be pushed far past any expectation I have had of my life in the church, and fear my inadequacy.

There's a huge bit of reality about to touch my life, one way or another.  And while I don't know know what the future holds, the only prayer that I can dare to pray with confidence is that God will be with us through it all.  And that the future will soon be the present.

Today's weigh-in: 218 Working to answer my doctor's prayer.