Enter with me that still place within,
where we find not only our inmost selves,
but also our connection to that
creative and transforming mystery we call God.
We come into one another's presence seeking some part of ourselves,
knowing that we do not live alone,
knowing that we cannot live fully
if we are for ourselves alone.
We come as ordinary people,
each with strengths and each with weaknesses,
aware of our shortcomings.
Our lives set before us many tasks.
We are not always equal to them.
Too often we fall short of our best expectations of ourselves.
And yet, here we are,
not always perfect,
not always wise,
but always wondrously and mysteriously human.
May our time together renew our hope.
May the stories we share refresh our courage.
May the songs we sing lift our spirits.
On this mild autumn day,
we bring to mind the many calls for peace in our world.
God longs for peace but we live in a divided world.
Our thinking is often muddled.
Our emotions are mixed.
Our actions inconsistent.
May we move from confusion to being a people of clarity.
May we move from greed to being a people of generosity.
May we move from violence to being a people of peace.
God longs for shalom - peace.
God longs for justice.
God longs for healing and wholeness.
May we have the wisdom and the courage and the love
to persevere when all else fails.
This is our prayer.