Prayer in anxious times — Cornelius Plantinga, USA

Gracious God, Champion of the Universe, we so often fluff ourselves up. Aren’t we the only creatures who compose masterpieces of music and art? Don’t we govern ourselves, enrich ourselves, promote ourselves? Can’t we dunk basketballs, bat baseballs, spike volleyballs? Aren’t some of us masters of comic irony? Other creatures don’t practice rocket science. We do.

And yet. Here we are, frightened by a thing so small it can’t be seen under most microscopes. It’s not even an animal or a plant. It’s a virus, a mere parasite, dependent on our own living cells to replicate.

And yet it has shuttered our schools, cancelled our flights, and emptied our churches. It has consumed the attention of our leading scientists, wrenched our politics out of shape, dominated our conversations, and scared the daylights out of us.

We don’t want to get sick. And we don’t want to die.

We are afraid, O God. Afraid of a microorganism. Afraid of each other.
Great and quiet source of peace, quiet our fears. We are wary, uncertain, strung tight. Quiet our fears. We have no idea what the future will bring, but we do know you will be in our future to hold us there.

We cannot quiet ourselves, O God. We cannot comfort ourselves, cannot heal ourselves, cannot help ourselves. All we can do is wash our hands and keep our distance. Our rocket science is no good to us for this threat.

O God, great and quiet source of peace, quiet us, your anxious ones, and let us cling for comfort to your suffering Son, Jesus. Gather us under his wings. Remind us that he suffers with us, but he’s also the great physician. In him, let us not be afraid. Please, let us not be afraid.