The prayer of St. Francis begins with: Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love…
It’s a great prayer and I pray it every night. The problem with praying this prayer every night is the fact that I don’t want to. I’m upset that people hate me so much they want to legislate against people like me, denying my humanity and the humanity of people that I love deeply. So, I don’t want to pray it, not one bit.
So why am I praying it then? Prayer forms me and changes who I am. Right now I don’t want to do a damn thing this prayer says, but if I pray it every night, as difficult as it is, I believe I will get to the point where the words of this prayer have soaked deep into my soul and it will be then that I pray it and truly want to do it.
I’ve had plenty of prayers that I have said even though I didn’t believe them at the time, and I prayed them until I did. I take the liturgy of the Episcopal Church seriously, allowing liturgy and prayer to fundamentally challenge and change who I am.
Right now, I don’t want to be an person that shows love to people that despise me, but I know that if I keep praying, I will get up one morning and show love even in the midst of hatred.