I bend and snap closed her pink heart-covered raincoat,
my knees creaking, the fabric swishing.
I sweep back a lock of her wavy blonde hair
and click the purple flower clip into place.
We will rush for shoes and boots and bag.

She cries when she’s tired, only she doesn’t know that’s the reason.
I wipe the salt-drops from beneath her eyes,
some slipping over her cheeks, falling to her belly, or to the floor.
We hug.  She crawls onto to my unsteady, half-squat lap.
I am bending and she is held.

An Always and Everything Prayer

(Reposted from


The greatest among you must be your servant.

Jesus, as I go about my day today,
I will have many opportunities to put
others ahead of myself.
Help me to recognize those times
and to respond as you would have me respond.

I will have opportunities
to practice humility.
Help me to recognize those times
and to not take myself too seriously.

People will not always treat me
the way I deserve to be treated.
Help me calm my anger
and to respond with compassion.

Someone might criticize me
and make me feel small and foolish.
Help me to forgive and to turn
my pain over to you.

I may face times
when others take credit
for my work.
Help me to seek justice justly,
and to let go of what
is best forgotten.

I will meet people who need
my help or at least a kind word.
Help me to help them without
expecting praise and thanks.

I will be in a position
of power over others.
Help me to use this power
justly and selflessly
and for the benefit of all.

Lord, I will have many opportunities
to put this prayer into practice.
Forgive me when I fail,
and help me always to try again.