He who learns must suffer, and, even in our sleep, pain that we cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God. - Aeschylus

Monday, March 14, 2016

Praying with the Gospels: Your Disciple's Denial

Lord, the weight of my fears presses upon me each time
I am asked to proclaim You in front of those who do not
believe in You, those who strive to trample Your name
in the mud churned by false prophets, and those who yet
attack those who seek to follow You on the road of love.

Jesus, I have denied You in their presence not just once,
not only twice, but even three times, with harsh epithets
and the quiet insistence of one who knows what he once
might have stated proudly will now have ultimate costs,
that he would die if he were to speak of Your great love.

Please grant that I may find the courage to proclaim all
that You have done for me so that the very stones need
not cry out in the absence of my voice, and meanwhile
have mercy upon me, I who have trembled and denied
You, and forgive Your disciple's denial in eternal love.

Gerard van Honthorst - The Denial of St Peter - WGA11661.jpg
By Gerard van Honthorst - Web Gallery of Art:   Image  Info about artwork, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15462297

Note: As with many portions of the Gospel narratives, there is a wealth of artwork depicting the denial of Peter, which is what this prayer is based on.

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