I am praying for you.
What does that mean to others, I asked a friend today? I have a few friends who are people of deep conscience that I approach in lieu of community elders.
When others say “I will pray for you”, what is it that they mean?
Had they imagined I had stopped remembering?
Is there more to do that I have forgotten?
Very young I was taught that my life was a prayer. There is no time I was aware of being a person that I do not also remember this awareness also being present.
So when I pray, it comes to me like a “Ok, show me how to help here? I am not sure what is next.”
And usually there is some one next thing that we can do. At least one thing.
When others say they will pray for me, I am confused as to their meaning.
I do not know what they are praying for exactly.
Aren’t people supposed to solve “people” troubles?
Don’t we need to prove that we can be responsible with the resources we have before we are given more?
Hasn’t God already given us plenty as long as we remember to share?
My brain goes crunk – like the giant from Princess Bride – my little bird cocks her head sidewise:
“You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”
And I could be sooooo wrong.
A word can mean different things to many.
“I do not know what else to do for him, Mama. What more is there?”
“Hold him in his best light, the very best version of himself. Hold that image up for him and for God to see. If you hold that, and it is what he wants, he will find it in himself and in the world. You can always do that.”
So, today, I enter a 60 day vigil for a specific religious calling a friend desires for himself. We will call him Jon.
I am not as stuck on specifics as many. I find that one is to serve where one is sent.
And the places of greatest need are rarely the places of greatest success or comfort.
Successes of the soul are not always reflected in success of notoriety. That is not my place.
But Jon believes this one position will validate his work. Who am I to contradict another’s sense of calling?
Visibility is a place in a circle without end in constant motion.
I have lived that circle. I had my burst upon it.
The work never dies.
The value is not more or less at the moment of sparking.
We just think it is.
P.S. – Hold a candle for my friend Jon today.
He wishes to be called through a narrow gate towards a place where he has been effective at serving the ill and dying for decades. He wishes his service to become a livelihood. It would certainly be less stressful for his family if he were able to fill his calling AND his livelihood at the same time. For many of us, that is not possible, but that says more about our culture than it does about the import or quality of those who do thankless labor in silent vigil.