this prayer from thomas merton has been a long time favorite of mine:

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and that I think I am following your will does not mean I am actually doing so. But I believe the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all I am doing. I hope I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you will never leave me to face my perils alone.

for these past two years in seattle, i have been re-discovering many things about myself: how willful i can be; how to deal with loneliness; what it means for be a son to my mother; the nature of friendship; how to act– not react– in a world filled with selfishness and downright evil; how to trust in God. often, it feels like i am limping along.

merton’s prayer keys on desire: vis-a-vis God and God’s reign and surprisingly graceful love. to hope for a desire that helps renew authentic faith is at the center of the prayer. how do i stir desire for God in my obscure vision? is it really God’s work? how much depends on me? how can i trust in God’s providential care to bring me through the fog?

will the Spirit provide me with understanding and courage to resurrect this desire and trust? am i too impatient to wait?

mary, is this how you felt watching your son carry the cross in his immense suffering? at the foot of the cross watching jesus die? mary, give me your strength and wisdom– give me your heart…

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