Today’s Bible reading and an excerpt

Read 2 Corinthians 13:11-14

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

Moer thoughts for meditation  

Sincerely. Respectfully. Yours Truly. Love. Thanks!

We sign our letters (more likely emails) with some short phrases. Sometimes I try to sign with a “have a great weekend” or “thanks for all you do.” But these don’t compare to the ways the epistles are signed. This week we’ve talked about intention with our words. What better way to wrap up this week, than with a proper, early church sign off. “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”

In chaplaincy there is a practice called the “Open Eyed Prayer.” Many patients that we visit are not from a religious tradition. Prayer is not part of their practice. But after a long meaningful conversation, we sometimes feel overwhelmed by the need to pray for all we just heard. It would be inappropriate for us to impose our prayer practice on someone who doesn’t want it, especially someone in a vulnerable state. Of course we hold these individuals in our hearts and often in our daily prayer lives, but there is something about sharing that with the other. So instead of heads bowed and eyes closed, we offered what we heard in what we hope for them. “I hope that that surgery goes well, and your recovery is quick.” “I will be carrying those stories in my heart.” “May you find the strength you need to make those changes in your life.” Using this practice in my work, has brought to life the need to pray without ceasing. We bear witness to so much. Create your own sign off- open eyed prayers- when you encounter needs. We don’t need to write a letter to the church in Corinth to bless those we come into contact with.

Brothers and sisters, I’m holding you all in my heart.

Suggestions for action

Use this prayer now.

May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit
be with us all, now and evermore.
Amen

As you feel led, create your own open eyed prayers to send your blessings to hurting and broken world.