Sunday, January 11, 2004

Pray the news, part II

OK, fine. So I can't sleep. I went to bed early thinking I was tired, but my brain won't shut down.

This morning my pastor pointed out an article in January's The Lutheran magazine: "Looking back at the news of 2003: How do you pray for the headlines?" by an Episcopalian, Barbara Crawthorne Crafton. (I had commented on an LA Times article a year and a half ago about a group of nuns who pray the news online; when I discovered Mercy Street, I saw that the sisters' site was one of Sparrow's links.)

While not sleeping in bed, it struck me that praying the news is not only praying for remote situations seemingly unrelated to me. I might even pray about the NY Times article I linked to earlier this evening—what was so compelling about it for me? Why do I keep imagining learning to raise cattle or sheep or chickens or pigs or about growing a garden on my parents' three acre farm? How would I ever earn a living? And what about finishing my degree?

So I go to the end of Crafton's article, where she gets downright Lutheran, and read:
Pray for your ethical choices and the choices of others. Pray for what happens as a result of those choices. Stumble along and figure it out as best you can. Peer as far into the future as you can see, never very far, and try to see all the possible outcomes of your actions. Then take a deep breath and act. And throw yourself upon God's mercy.

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