Image by See-ming Lee 李思明SML via FlickrToday's post features a prayer written for those who feel excluded or harassed or bullied, written in response to the highly publicized suicides of teens who were tormented for being gay or for being suspected of being gay. Granted it is a Christian prayer, and many of my readers are not part of that faith tradition, but it's still worth sharing. And if you have one from your own faith tradition that you think would be appropriate to this theme, send it my way and I'll put it up as well.
A Prayer When I Feel Hated by Father James Martin, S.J.
Loving God, you made me who I am.
I praise you and I love you,
for I am wonderfully made, in your own image.
But when people make fun of me,
I feel hurt and embarrassed and even ashamed.
So please God, help me remember my own goodness,
which lies in you.
Help me remember my dignity,
which you gave me when I was conceived.
Help me remember that I can live a life of love,
because you created my heart.
Be with me, loving God, when people hate me,
and help me to respond how you would want me to:
with a love that respects others, but also respects me.
Help me find friends who love me for who I am.
Help me, most of all, to be a loving person.
And God, help me remember that Jesus loves me.
For he was seen as an outcast, too.
He was misunderstood, too.
He was beaten and spat upon.
Jesus understands me,
and loves me with a special love,
because of the way you made me.
And when I am feeling lonely,
help me to remember that Jesus welcomed everyone as a friend.
Jesus reminded everyone that God loved them.
Jesus encouraged everyone to embrace their dignity,
even when others were blind to seeing that dignity.
Jesus loved everyone with the boundless love that you gave him.
And he loves me, too.
One more thing, God:
Help me remember
that nothing is impossible with you,
that you have a way of making things better,
and that you can find a way of love for me,
even if I can’t see it right now.
Help me remember all these things
in the heart you created, loving God.