A Collective Prayer

The unexamined life is not worth living.


Yesterday in church during a time when anyone in the congregation can share a prayer of concern or gratitude, I found my hand going up in the air almost without my consent. I hadn’t planned on sharing anything, but it seemed that something wanted to be shared and I was the one to share it. Taking the microphone that was passed down the pew to me, here was what wanted to be shared...

If our daughters were here today they would tell you that I was (still am) fond of saying that we all have our “stuff” (only I usually use a better and more descriptive word when not in church). It’s the stuff that we need to work out, usually with the help of a therapist, so that we can become our most authentic, healed, and wholehearted selves. When we don’t take our stuff on, we take it out on other people. The wounds and hurts that go untended go on to wound and hurt other people. Especially those we care the most about.

May we all have the courage to do our work.

There was a collective resonance in the sanctuary, the nodding of heads, and quiet murmurs of acknowledgement and understanding. I seem to be thinking, talking, and writing about this a lot right now, and if you are tired of reading about it here, I understand, but somehow it feels that if we don’t get this right, we don’t get anything right. Inner work is hard and uncomfortable. It requires courage and vulnerability. But it is the only way to an authentic, healed, and wholehearted life, which is why we arrived on the planet in the first place.

May we all have the courage to do our work.