The world: what do we pray for?

Top of the world
As the world turns
The world on a string
Around the world

In his 1873 novel, Jules Verne took us Around the World in 80 Days. Less than 100 years later Mercury satellite (and television) took us around the earth in 88 minutes. Today the internet takes us not only around the planet but also anywhere on it and back in less than a few seconds. When our Wi-Fi is not shaky.

The world on a slip of paper

The World in the prayer box

My curiosity about how we see the world started with trying to nail down how I feel about it. About 1/2way through the pandemic we’ve known thus far, I wrote “The World” on a paper slip and added it to my prayer box. Been praying about it ever since. And wondering what does it mean to me? Which got me to wondering what it means to you.

I still carry the childhood perception that the world is “so large”. Some of the time. Other times I think of it as becoming ever smaller, perhaps because “globalization”, a buzz-word of the ‘90s, has become reality.

The world: a pale blue dot

Our pale blue dot

It was 1990 when the Voyager 1 satellite, heading for the boundaries of our Solar System, turned long enough to photograph Earth. The picture is from 4 million miles away. Carl Sagan’s speech in which he shared the picture and introduced the “pale blue dot” is still powerful.

Sagan’s phrase signifies our uniqueness, our miniscule presence, and our helpless strength. Perhaps more poetic is his statement that our planet is a “mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam”. Surely that is what Maya Angelou referenced in her “A Brave and Startling Truth” to celebrate the United Nation’s 50th birthday in 1995.  She so poetically prays that “We, this people on this mote of matter” will come to learn the brave and startling truth and be able to release our fingers from the fists of hostility.

Each morning, as I come to “The World” among the other 50 or so slips of paper, I wonder if my prayer is huge enough. Or I wonder if I can personalize my world enough that it will accept a smaller poem. Most days I let confusion pass, and I say the prayer I’ve used for years.

Living, loving God,
together with you, the World, and all of your creation,
we affirm and praise and give thanks
for your blessings of peace and love and joy,
of health and well-being and prosperity,
from your power and your presence
now and continuing for the world.
So it is and so we thank you, God.

I don’t know that any way we pray can be too big or too small. I do know I aim to pray for the world more, more often.

Today’s Praying for the World

Power and Presence that is All.
All that created all that is.
And All that you created from your All,
from the Spirit that is the being–
the love and joy and peace,
the grace and good and harmony–
of All the World.
Spirit, we welcome the energy that come from praying
for the good of the world and all it contains,
and the peace among all being that is of the world,
for the joy of feeling it
as our intimate home and as greater than the universe.

And, World-maker, we welcome giving to the world
our respect and protection, our kindness and blessings,
and our gratitude for the liveliness, security, and beauty
that it offers us.

If the world is but the pale blue dot of earth,
or if it is All that is, beyond the sunbeam, beyond all matter,
the thank you that it is.
And so we recognize our world. And so it is, however we may hold it.

Love & blessings,



5 February 2021

Posted on March 5, 2021 at 3:13 pm by Tim · Permalink
In: God, Grace, Gratitude, Joy, Love, Peace, Prayer · Tagged with: , , ,