Your knowing is more powerful than our secrets…

February 16th, 2011

My husband sends a weekly email to the college-age Christian community at our church. The prayer found in today's email is too raw, too revelatory, too beautiful, too liberating, too necessary not to pass on.

We have secrets. We're lying if we say that we don't. The beautiful part of admitting this is exactly what Walter leads us into praying, that God's knowing is more powerful than our secrets. That we can take a deep sigh in his presence because we no longer feel the need to cover up or deny anything. Our secrets are emptied of strength and we find ourselves free.

We are free to live. Free to lead each day minus any guilt or shame. We the redeemed, realize that God knows–forgives–and transforms. And we find ourselves liberated, lighter, embraced, exuberant, zealous…

Will you pray?

“Almighty God . . . from whom no secrets are hid

We are rich conundrums of secrets,

we weave a pattern of lies in order to be

well thought of,

we engage in subterfuge about our truth.

We carry old secrets too painful to utter,

too shameful to acknowledge

too burdensome to bear,

of failures we cannot undo,

of alienations we regret but cannot fix,

of grandiose exhibits we cannot curb

And you know them.

You know them all.

And so we keep a deep sigh in your presence,

no longer needing to pretend and

cover up and


We mostly do not have big sins to confess,

only modest shames that do not

fit our hoped-for selves.

And then we find that your knowing is more

powerful than our secrets.

You know and do not turn away,

and our secrets that seemed too powerful

are emptied of strength,

secrets that seemed too burdensome

are now less severe.

We marvel that when you find us out,

you stay with us,

taking us seriously,

taking our secrets soberly,

but not ultimately,

overpowering our little failure

with your massive love

and abiding patience.

We long to be fully, honestly

exposed to your gaze of gentleness.

In the moment of your knowing

we are eased and lightened,

and we feel the surge of joy move in our bodies,

because we are not ours in cringing

but yours in communion.

We are yours and find the truth before you

makes us free for

wonder, love, and praise — and new life.

[Taken from Prayers for a Privileged People by Walter Brueggemann]


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