Dear People’s people,

At the church, this is the busiest time of the year. Stewardship season is drawing to a close and your leaders and I are working to craft a budget. There are reports and other documents to prepare for the annual meeting. There are services and classes and events to prepare for and lead. There are emails to respond to and people to visit and plans to make for the summer and the next church year. It’s uncertain, busy, anxious and, when I remember pause to notice all of the hard work of so many dedicated People’s people, beautiful. (And that’s not to mention all of the busyness and obligations outside of the church.)

If you are alongside me in feeling especially busy and overwhelmed and frantic this time of year, I offer this piece of writing from my colleague, Rev. Meg Riley, the senior minister at the Church of the Larger Fellowship (a church that is online and by mail that serves UUs who can’t participate in other congregations, often because of geographic isolation).

A Prayer for the Overwhelmed

For you who are stretched too thin,
Flat out, Buried up to your eyeballs,
Pulled in too many directions,
Keeping too many balls in the air,
Tracking too many loose ends.
May you drop it all, just for a moment, and know strength and wholeness.

For you with to-do lists as thick as the yellow pages,
With electronic time management systems
And scraps of napkins and receipts with urgent notes on the back.
For you worn out from chasing young children,
For you responsible for both children and aging parents,
For you caregivers,
For you split shift workers,
For you job seekers, never resting easy in your search.
May you come to rest, just for a moment, and know well-being.

For you who struggle to make ends meet,
Who don’t know where the money will come from,
Who juggle bills deftly as those who juggle fire,
For you who can’t keep up with the medical bills,
Who are as stressed by insurance as you are by the illness,
Who are being hounded by creditors or causes,
May you have clarity, just for a moment, that life matters more than money.

Breathe in joy, breathe out fear.
Breathe in fluidity, breathe out rigidity.
Breathe in acceptance, breathe out resistance.

May you know you are not alone.
May you feel encircled by loving arms.
May you know, finally, that whatever you
Do or don’t do
See or don’t see,
Pay or don’t pay,
You are part of the web of life
And there you are held, secure.

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