© Beth A. Richardson, betharichardson.com
Loving God, help me be the face of joy to someone who might be struggling today. If I am facing struggles of my own, gently guide my thoughts toward gratitude, that I may rejoice always in you. Amen.
Replace my fear with gratitude.
Every time I see this sculpture in the worship center of a local retreat center, it speaks to me. The figure kneeling in prayer represents whatever emotion I am feeling at that time — fear, sadness, anger, gratitude. I can bring all of these emotions to God in prayer.
This is a photograph of a sculpture by Joyce Beisswenger, one of the founders of Penuel Ridge Retreat Center. She created the piece in the 1980s and has since passed away. This is a one-of-a-kind piece that lives at the Center.
What are your fears? What helps you cope with your fears?
I'm a big fan of Patricia Wilson. 1. She's a great writer in the area of practical spirituality; 2. She's from Vancouver, British Columbia. (I just think that's cool.); and 3. She's really funny. You'll have to check out her other books, including Why Pray When You Can Take Pills and Worry? Quiet Spaces is one of her "tamer" offerings — a daily meditation book for women.
I could not have found The Upper Room Moments of Prayer (on Facebook Live) sooner. For it is during these moments of centering spiritual practices, meditating on the words of scripture, praying with and for the world, that I find moments of transcendence, hear whispers of peace and hope, see glimpses of truth and justice, behold visions of love and beauty amid all the stark realities that are around me.”