Four years ago I traveled to India with my friend Beth. We bumped and wound our way across the oceans and lands to Kolkata. And for a few weeks we worked side-by-side with the sisters of Missionaries of Charity, offering love and daily blessings to the suffering. Most mornings we got up at 5am to go to chapel at the Mother House, followed by breakfast and chai with the volunteers and sisters. At the end of this morning ritual, we collectively prayed:
Dear Lord, the great Healer, I kneel before you,
Since every good and perfect gift must come from you.
I pray give skill to my hands, clear vision to my mind, kindness and meekness to my heart.
Give me singleness of purpose, strength to life up a part of the burden of my suffering fellow men,
And a true realization of the privilege that is mine.
Take from my heart all guile and worldliness that with the simple faith of a child - I may rely on you.
I am remembering this prayer today, as I leave for Africa with my brother.
And as we inaugurate our 44th President.
And as we recognize the life and work of Martin Luther King Jr.
May you be inspired to live brighter and fuller, with a truer and more humble sense of self and our fellow man, as the incomplete creatures that we are.
I hope to write from Africa. But in the land of breathtaking beauty and savage poverty, who knows.