Note: This week’s New Every Morning is structured differently to follow the format of our featured title, Rally: Communal Prayers for Lovers of Jesus and Justice, which addresses issues of social justice through a compilation of reflections and call-and-response prayers known as litanies.
I’ve never been a very good gardener. In all my efforts to have a beautiful, full garden, I often end up with half a crop at best. Some vegetables never see the surface. In other words, I’m still learning. But while gardening requires research and work, it’s also a deeply spiritual practice. It requires a gentle spirit, conversations with dirt and seedlings, and a lot of prayer. When my two children sing to our seeds, the ones that are deep in the dirt waiting to be born, they are learning that the Earth listens. She listens and she speaks. She tells stories. She fosters life again and again for us, and we are stewards of that life, lives that belong to the goodness of God.
—Kaitlin Curtice, “Stewards of Our Home: A Litany for Our Interdependent Relationship with All of Creation,” Rally: Communal Prayers for Lovers of Jesus and Justice, edited and compiled by Britney Winn Lee (Fresh Air Books, 2020)
What does creation teach you about God? Join the conversation.
For as the earth brings forth its shoots,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise
to spring up before all the nations.
—Isaiah 61:11 (NRSV)
ONE: We acknowledge the indigenous peoples who have always cared for the land. We acknowledge that we must learn from them, honor their stories, and pay attention to a deeper kind of relationship. May we dig deeper.
ALL: Because we are dust to dust.
ONE: We hope for a future in which we are hospitable because the Earth is hospitable. We long for a future in which our relationship is born out of constant connectedness, so that when we care for one another, we are caring for her. May hospitality be our future.
ALL: Because we are dust to dust and the Earth has always taken care of us.
Because we are dust to dust, we will recognize our place in this world.
Because we are dust to dust, we will choose, every day, to remember.
—Kaitlin Curtice, “Stewards of Our Home: A Litany for Our Interdependent Relationship with All of Creation”
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
The final litany from Rally was written by Britney Winn Lee in the beginning days of the global pandemic. This prayer reminds us that hope endures; goodness prevails; people surprise us; and love cannot, has not, will not fail. Watch and listen.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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