A Better Prayer

Someone at church had the bright idea to add a graphic with the prayer of St. Francis right on the front of our bulletin, the paper everyone entering the sanctuary is given in order to have something to read during the slow parts of the sermon.  I think it may have been our pushy pastor, who seems to want me to be better than I am.  Actually, this is a fake prayer because St. Francis isn’t even believed to have written it. I graciously gave him some feedback after the service, letting him know I was okay with it all except the pardoning nonsense, asking that he please edit it out and I would be on board. Further consideration has brought to light though that I really am not okay with much of the prayer. I prefer my version to the one posted and invite you to join me in being a real Christian and living this out.
This is the version presented, you can see it is full of errors.
Lord make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy
O divine master grant that I may
not so much seek to be consoled as to console
to be understood as to understand
To be loved as to love
For it is in giving that we receive
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned
And it’s in dying that we are born to eternal life
Lord, let others be instruments of peace, the kind that doesn’t infringe on my views and ideology and need to express my inner snark.
Where there is hatred, let others stop being passionate about their kids and causes and political stances and understand that I am right
Where there is injury, let others stop being so thin-skinned and to seek out how they have injured me
Where there is doubt, let others grow their faith while my fears are allowed to fester and grow roots
Don’t even talk to me about despair, mine is clearly deeper than yours and should be all we discuss
Where there is darkness, let others be the light to fire up other’s candles. Please don’t ask me to share this little light of mine.
Sadness, really? Joy is overrated and I prefer not to see cute pictures of kittens and your grandchildren. Let others find their own way out of that. Not my responsibility.
Yep, you God, give me all the consolation for my broken heart and don’t show me that of others. Me first, if any consoling energy is left, then you can start on the hungry, on the imprisoned, those who are afraid and alone or those worried about the next house payment or where their children are. Me Me Me.
Further, lets all seek to understand my struggle and journey and inability to shower as often as I should, the fact that I can’t seem to stop smoking and drink too much wine.
Also, I will graciously accept all the love, don’t ask me to love those who have hurt me or taken the parking spot I was waiting for or post stupid things on social media that I don’t agree with. My posts are of course never hurtful or judgmental, all spring out of infinite wisdom and the best of intentions.
I will willing accept all that is given if I want it and will give as it is convenient, left over bags of lentils and cans of beets are acceptable donations for food drives and cast off socks to Goodwill can be taken off my taxes without guilt.
(Here is the tricky part but I think this works best)
Pardon me for anything and everything I have ever done and will probably do again. You know my heart and it is blameless. The others who have wronged me and the list is long, Lord, you know it is, well, let them learn from their wrongs and beg for my forgiveness.
I choose not to let go of my sins, I’m not gonna die and bring forth goodness right now, just not a good time for me. I’ll get back to this one when the timing is better, I’m not yet ready to let go of my sinning. I definitely think others should work on this though, I can provide a complete list of those who have some behavior issues for you to get on, God.
Can I get an Amen?

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