The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word. Morning by morning he wakens – wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught. ~ Isaiah 50:4
Lord of all learning and growth, we pray that you would teach us to listen. Still our minds, silence our tongues, and give us attentiveness to hear that which you want us to hear.
Help us listen to the cries of your children in Yemen, the Ukraine, and Ethiopia, where the worst of human behaviors are on full display in the needless cruelty and destruction of war. Fill us and our political leaders with righteous anger, and empower us to act in ways that can bring true peace with justice in these and all places of conflict and war.
Help us to listen to the joyful celebration of voices silence for too long as Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson is confirmed as the first black female justice on the United States Supreme Court. Fill us with gratitude for progress made and with courage for the hard work of ensuring justice for all people.
Help us to listen to the frustrations and fears of all people as we fully enter the third year of a global pandemic in which there are no easy answers to policy or procedure. Fill us with compassion for those in Shanghai, China who are struggling to access supplies in the midst of a weeks-long lockdown and for those in South Korea, Germany, and France, where case rates are elevated once again.
Help us to listen for the stillness of reflection and prayer as Muslims around the world participate in daily fasting, prayer, and community-building during the month of Ramadan. Fill us with your Spirit as we recognize all the ways your children seek deeper understanding and connection with the divine.
Help us to listen to the diverse sounds of your creation. Fill us with energy for advocacy and service to the trees, rivers, and animals that sustain us. May we, like the former Farc rebels of Columbia who are now fighting to protect the Amazon rainforest from illegal logging, perceive the need for intervention and work to shape all humanity into good stewards of the world you have put under our care.
God of all our senses, we praise you for giving us ways to engage with all the richness of our world: eyes to take in its beauty, noses to smell its diversity, ears to hear the sounds of joy and sadness, grief and exaltation. May we use these gifts always with reverence, gratitude, and a deep desire to grow into the people you call us to be.