Intercession

Today, I found myself sick-of-heart and despondent. I sat and I prayed myself in circles, confused spirals of embattled pleas, caught between my own heart’s desires and a yearning for God’s will. I crave truth and enlightenment, but also fear it in that lies can be so sweet and comforting, and I’m not sure I’m willing to part with them. I confess a stronghold in my life, a place that is difficult for God to touch, a piece of me that I fear giving Him because I have in the past, and I have only known heartache and disappointment.

There are so many areas I have given over freely to God. I do not worry or stress, for I know God will carry me through. But this place, this small corner of my heart, I cannot give to Him completely. I have tried, and I still try, but I feel myself reflexively snatch my hand back every time I hand it to Him. I have been praying to God about this for a very long time, asking him to bless this area of my life, or to remove the desires from me altogether, but nothing has changed.

And so I shall wait. I’ve become very good at waiting. It seems to be all I am ever called to do. I know God has much to teach me, but at this point I no longer know what to pray for. I do not know what I need. So today, brokenhearted, my prayers a dizzying knot, I just started calling out names of saints. I called on every saint I could think of: Saint Peter, pray for me. Saint Mary Magdalene, pray for me, and so many others. Even the obscure ones: Saint Mary of Egypt, pray for me. Saint Quitera, pray for me. Even the ones I don’t know are real or not: Saint Christopher, pray for me. Saint Brigid, pray for me. When I was done, I prayed Hail Mary’s and Our Father’s and Glory Be’s. And when I ran out of things to pray about I just let myself slip into the tearless calm of a quiet mind and imagined a desert spread before me. I stayed there for a long time in the quiet hollow, suspended from my own fears and hurts, and just focused on peace. I imagined each saint praying for me. I imagined the Holy Spirit holding vigil inside me, couching in prayer, whispering the wisdom I lack.

I don’t know what to ask for anymore. I don’t know what to want anymore. I feel caught in the confines of my own prayers, lost in a sea of desires deep and heavy. It is times like this that make intercessory prayer so valuable. I don’t know what to do, pray for me. Speak the words I do not have, pray for me. Ask that my heart be healed, pray for me.

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