Trouble us.

I recently read a beautiful prayer by Martin Luther that has really stuck with me.

Waken our hearts, O Lord, our God; make them ever watchful to serve You and Your purposes. Trouble us with the smallness of our vision and work. Trouble us with the greatness of Your command to make disciples of all nations. Trouble us with Your great love for sinners and our own slowness to make You our greatest love. Trouble us with the brevity of our lives and time, talent, and treasure not invested in eternity. Comfort us by drawing us to Yourself with the cords of Your unfailing mercy. Comfort us, O Lord, with the assurance of our salvation and unending glory with You when we suffer and are afflicted. Rekindle in us a renewed desire for the coming of Your glorious kingdom when all wrongs will be made right, when everything that is broken will be made whole, and when we will trade a cross for a crown. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

So I decided to write a prayer for myself and for the world, asking for God to move boldly. While it was a challenge, I believe it is also necessary. May it be a blessing to you.

Trouble us, O God.

Trouble us that our perspectives may be shaken, our confidence set aside, and our call to justice renewed.

Trouble us not just to “walk a mile in someone else’s shoes,” but to also offer our jackets and our glasses and our homes and our hearts.

Trouble us to value our uniqueness rather than our greatness.

Trouble us to be faithful, not perfect.

Trouble us to ask hard questions rather than settling for easy or comforting or dismissive answers.

Trouble us, O God, to truly acknowledge the ways in which we are sinners, are silent, are hurtful, are distracted, are broken.

And trouble us that our acknowledgment may move us, call us, drive us to loving, gracious, bold action.

And in the midst of the trouble, comfort us, O Gracious Healer, so that we may have a chance to feel the ground beneath our feet and be reminded of your steadfast love in the face of the trouble.

Comfort us with community and safety and rest.

Comfort us with friends, mentors, and motivators who teach us, challenge us, and model for us the love and action of Jesus.

Comfort us with good theology that lives and breathes and jumps – out of books and minds and institutions, into our hands and hearts and character.

Comfort us with truth and justice and mercy. Comfort us with relationships, homes, churches, spaces of safety, authenticity, and radical inclusion.

Comfort us with places where we can wrestle with questions, doubt, mess, and calling – to find you in the midst of it all.

Most of all, O God, comfort us with the truth and power of the saving death and resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ.



Painting: “Comfort” by Edvard Munch, 1907.

2 thoughts on “Trouble us.

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  1. I had never read nor heard the Martin Luther prayer. I was glad that you posted it for us to read. THEN, I was glad that God moved you to write your own…equally thought-provoking and profound.


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