Thursday, November 11, 2010

Prayer for Heart of Hospitality

(from Karen Burton Mains, "Open Heart, Open Home")


Thank you for having given your self in intimate,

inexplicable hospitality.

You have been the Host to all creation.

Without a dwelling, You have contained the

whole word and habited Yourself in the winds,

the corners, and the depths, inviting us to be

at home with You. Beneath the shadow of Your

wing You bid us hide, and in the depths of Your

Being You shelter and refuge us.

Without meat You have nourished us.

Without beverage You have refreshed us.

By Your very Word came sustenance.

On bread and water without price have we been fed.

You have been manna in the wilderness of our lives.

Without a table You have banqueted us, inviting us, yea, to be married unto you.

Over our heads flies the banner of Your love.

We are entertained with the mysteries of faith,

the songs of the Spirit, holy laughter.

You have garmented us in festal righteousness.

As we wandered in wastelands,

You sought us before we called.

You extended eager welcome

though we had scarcely knocked.

You embraced us when we were filthy

and oppressed and undeserving.

You are the Samaritan who passes not by,

Who finds lodging for us in the warm inns by the way.

You bake fish over coals, waiting for us,

though we have forgotten to wait for You.

With broken hands You break the loaf of blessing.

Those same wounds caress our leprous spirits.

You do not fear to openly accept the intimate worship

of our harlot hearts.

You are the Host of all mankind.

Lifted up, suffering, without breath, You yet

extend greeting to all the masses,

'Come unto me....



You give us the mystery of Your presence

in this supper of the ages, this remembrance of

Your ultimate hospitality

O Lord,

Make my hospitality as unto Yours,

Be forever my archetype of endeavor,

My firstfruit of harvested goodness;

Love for the battered, misused child,

Grace to bind running ulcers of flesh and soul,

Eagerness for the wealthy without servility,

And for the poor without superiority.

Through eternity You have been and will be

utterly hospitable.

Help me,

poor, faltering, unfeeling me,

to be like you,

with breath-beat and soul-heart

poured out



Help me,

to be given to hospitality."

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