Reaching Out In Love
The house across the street from ours is occupied by a group of men who’ve recently immigrated from an Asian country. I think they are working at a nearby jet assembly plant. These men seem to be very kind and to enjoy each other’s company.
One of the men wants to talk with me and I would love to talk with him. He always speaks to me and I speak to him. As much as we both wish we could, we don’t speak each other’s language. We speak in our own languages and we each say a few sentences and smile, and then we move on. I think we’re talking about cars, but I don’t really have any way of knowing. We’ve repeated this a dozen times.
Our interactions remind me how much we all long to connect and how hard it can be to reach out. To be heard and to hear another, to appreciate someone and be appreciated are strong desires. I don’t think many of us learn how to do that, and the absence of it feels quite lonely.
This man and I are reaching out to connect and I have a prayer that we succeed. Each time it happens, I have a prayer I say:
“Divine, guide us to connecting.”
I don’t try to tell the Divine how to do that—I don’t have any good tips. Simply
“Guide us to connecting.”
I want this man to know that I welcome him, that I can sense his kindness, that I know he has stories to tell and that I want to hear them. I want so many people to know that and it isn’t always language that is the barrier. I know I’m not alone in that desire. The things that can keep us apart take so many forms:
-certainty that the desire isn’t mutual (it usually is)
-the unfamiliarity of reaching across to another human we think is a stranger.
My prayer is expansive enough to cover all the bases:
“Divine, guide me to connecting with another human today.”
It’s a prayer that is on my tongue and in my heart everyday and, in the grace of those connections, I’m blessed. I look forward to learning my new friend’s name and when I know it, I will introduce you.
“Divine, guide me to connecting. Thank you”
You can find other prayers in my newest book, Your Life Is Your Prayer.