Friday, January 15, 2010

Prayer boots

It is the official third day of reckoning in Haiti. Yes, the devastation is all over the news. All of the "expected" natural disaster pictures have been posted; bodies covered with bloody sheets, men and women with vacant eyes, their heads in their hands, mothers wailing over the broken bodies of their once gorgeous children, and a world in shock at what we cannot control, not ever, no matter the technology or power.
Humbling does not even come close to describing this event, or Katrina, or the tsunami. It is destruction on a scale that trumps many petty grievances and complaints.
It also begs more of us as creatures of empathy and compassion.
For those faithful followers of this blog, you know that I am irreverent most times. Maybe I find life too funny or ironic. Maybe my words are too sharp. But the precision of those words and the honesty with which I try to convey what is happening in my small world comes from a place of compassion, probably to a fault.
I pray. A lot. I'm not a Christian (although, man, the story of Christ is miraculous, even as a human so concerned for the lives of strangers), I'm not a Jew (yet as the chosen People and as perpetual outcasts, I feel the stalwart history there), you get the point. By all standard accounts, I guess I am a heathen.
I'm not feeling it, though. I pray and worry so much that it makes me unable to sleep, eat, sometimes dream. On my hikes (my form of prayer) I think of all the REAL people I know who could use some grace, some compassion, and someone to think of them. I don't know if it works, but I do it every day.
I am pretty tired after those hikes. Of course, you know who I always forget to pray for.
So, weird as it is, uncomfortable as it might be, pray once in awhile. Whether it's to your God, the sun, the moon, your dead grandmother---grace is necessary, otherwise we wouldn't survive this place for an hour.

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