A blessing for when love makes us afraid - Kate Bowler

Complicated Grief and Complicated Love with

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A blessing for when love makes us afraid

Blessed are you,
Looking at the miracle—the surprise before your eyes:
That kid you prayed so hard for.
The relationship you hoped would come.
The feeling of family you get when you’re all together.

This chest-expanding, heart-bursting, time-please-slow-down kind of love.

The kind of love that you would really prefer to roll in bubble wrap.
To protect them just a little longer from the harshness of the world
and our helplessness to keep them safe.

It’s a wonder that so much love makes us so afraid.

Blessed are we, who remember this strange equation.
That with so much we have, there is so much to lose.

Grant us gratitude for the villages who make us feel less alone
In the needs we cannot meet.
The guarantees we cannot make.
The futures we cannot predict.

Grant us the practice of presence to count eyelashes,
squeeze in another bear hug, and linger in the doorway a little longer.
Because yes, the days are long but the years are short.
And that is what this moment offers us.

Grant us the wisdom to show them the world
in its wonder and tragedy,
its brokenness and splendor.
Where joy and sorrow somehow co-exist.

And grant us courage for when we have to let go.
Of the fear, of the worry, of the hands we long to hold.
Knowing… trusting that our loves and worries are held together
by Someone greater still.

This blessing was inspired by my conversation with Mary Laura Philpott on the Everything Happens Podcast. Listen to it here.

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Matt Bradley
5 months ago

My wife and I learned of the mass killing of children in a daycare in Thailand as we were heading to drop our kids off at their daycare here in Louisville. I listened to you pray this blessing on your podcast later that morning, words which summed up all that roiled in my heart: Love and fear and loss and trust, all tangled up together. Thank you for being a blessing, Kate.

5 months ago

It’s loaded with ideas that I didn’t realize that were part of life itself.Had to read it over more than once.

Amy Davis
5 months ago

I’m so scared of everyone I love because they represent everything I could lose. Thanks for creating a space where that’s less weird to say out loud.

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