Friday, June 16, 2006

In Oxford over Spring Break, I bought a book by Rachel Srubas, a Presbyterian clergywoman who has spent a lot of time around Benedictine monasteries. (I always seem to be attracted to people who have come to the Benedictines in an unusual way.) It's called Oblation, and it's a series of prayer-poems related to St. Benedict's Rule. I flipped it open last night, sort of randomly, and found a word that cut straight to the heart of my life this week. Thought I'd share it.

The Friction of Difference

Part of me will always be anarchic.
I worry for the ones who perpetually
tiptoe, too timid ever to test a boundary,
or probe a prohibition.
Where is their lives' electricity,
the friction of difference,
the tension, innovation, creativity?

Jesus, you respect my questions.
You asked them, yourself,
whenever you healed on the Sabbath
or partied with the riff-raff.
Every woman you ever talked with,
the Samaritans and the Magdalenes, learned
that God blesses our transgressions
when they're the only way
love's law can be fulfilled. Jesus,
govern my conscience.
Teach me to distinguish
childish defiance from justified dissent.
Help me to dismantle, according to your gospel,
policies that silence and dispirit your people.

And should I rebel only for the sake
of disruption, reverting from adult
to adolescent, correct me.
Send me compassionate advisors,
and by their wise counsel, return me
to the heart of your community.


Blogger Jeremiah said...

Katie--May the Lord bless you and keep you this weekend at home with your parents. I know that some aspects of this trip will be difficult, but I know that you and yours will grow through the guidance of the Lord. Love you!

4:56 PM  
Blogger Scott said...

Love this prayer...especially since I tend to be a bit anarchical as well.

3:52 AM  
Blogger Beverly said...

Beautiful..beautiful, Katie..thank you so much for sharing it..

7:05 AM  

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