Blessed Inversion

Last week it was my turn to lead the Wednesday afternoon “Open Door” service in Keffer Chapel at the seminary where I work. Instead of using the prayers in our denominational worship book I wrote my own, as I do from time to time. For those so interested, I include here for your edification (I hope!) a part of the liturgy called the “proper preface.” This prayer arrives a step or two ahead of the words recounting Jesus’ last meal with his disciples. The prayer typically speaks of God’s majesty. In this instance, I speak of the majesty of God from the perspective of the beatitudes in order to underscore God who sides with the least, the lost, and the broken. Without further adieu (!), my offering:

It is indeed our duty and delight that we should praise you, Holy God of power and might;

God of humility, God of suffering love;
God crossing barbed fence, God jeered,God mirrored
in the faces of children bereft of parents,
God spoken in the cries of the dejected, the rejected,
the refuse of the earth; God with us in both hell and heaven too,

where we laud you with angels, archangels, cherubim and seraphim as we sing you Holy.


12 thoughts on “Blessed Inversion

  1. Marie Taylor says:

    “with us in both hell and heaven, too…” always beside us, ever faithful. thanks for sharing.

  2. I heard or read this past week that in Jesus, God wasn’t so much writing the poetics of human life as becoming the poetic symbol of all life. Thank you for saying the same in your prayer.

  3. dianerivers says:

    Your title perfectly introduces and sums this up. I especially love being reminded of “God who sides with the least, the lost, and the broken.” What a beautiful idea to view and worship Him from this perspective.

  4. Thanks Allen – a fine piece of theology, poetry, and liturgy all in one!

    peace Rob


  5. jannatwrites says:

    I’m glad you shared this. It’s part poetry, part prayer and speaks beautiful truth. God is with us- all of us. No matter what we go through, we aren’t alone.

  6. shoreacres says:

    Oh, my. I’m behind on my reading since I’m traveling (you know about that!), but I’m glad I didn’t read this until today. Laughter may not be the response you imagined, but yesterday I was out on the Santa Fe trail – really out there, on a one lane dirt road – and as I backed up to get a photo of a geocache that had been tucked behind a marker, I backed my behind right into – barbed wire!

    The image of God as one who can cross barbed wire without snagging his pants is a good one. I wasn’t so lucky. 😉

    • agjorgenson says:

      That is a great comment, and certainly my favourite for this post. I heard at a conference this week that we do not laugh enough, and so I am glad to hear of your chuckles. I too am behind in my reading, but do not have travel to blame. Maybe a post about time and reading is in the works? Allen

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