Intercessions are Being Launched

By Ken Sehested

Written in response to a friend’s agonizing note reporting on the
harrowing violence unfolding in Ukraine

We, from this distance and in our negligent comfort and
delinquent affluence, lack the ability to stretch our hands to
yours to feel your shivers; to enlarge our hearts so that they
beat in rhythm with your sobs; to train our eyes so that they
rise above the frivolous, paltry distractions, immune to grief,
comforted in our colonized minds, asking only
what more is there to drink?
what more, to eat?
what more, to abduct our attention from the brutal fate
of distant, disposable victims of imperial lust and
bloated arrogance?

Kyrie eleison, Lord have mercy.

Who indeed—as the Apostle beseeched—can save from this
body of death? In our weakness we pray, all the while
recognizing that our own spiritual pittance, hobbled by our
insulating wealth, renders us complicit in a world governed by
fuming avarice, administered by relentless corruption,
subjugated by callous threat.

We, too, have received our 30 pieces of silver to turn a blind
eye to a rapacious economy, propped up by legislative infamy,
and enforced by judicial villainy.

Kyrie eleison, Lord have mercy.

May our prayers for mercy embolden our hearts and hands,
put us on alert, to the moments and whereabouts of the Spirit’s
counteroffensive.

Blessed One, tutor us in the practice of praise that provokes
treason against every hard-hearted arrangement.

Only embodied reverence can tame leviathan’s violence. Only
disarmed hearts can contend with the beast without making us
beastly. Only such praise can leverage the earth’s maddening
orbit back to its Rightful Tender.

Then, no longer shall the beggarly be auctioned to satisfy
ravenous demand. They shall find refuge, deliverance, in
secured, Promised Land—all under their own vine and fig tree
where none shall be afraid. For the Beloved has vowed a
ransomed release from misery’s increase: healing the lamed,
gathering the shamed, transforming their weeping to a torrent
of praise.

Kyrie eleison, Lord have mercy.

So, dear sister, be assured that intercessions are being
launched on behalf of all under assault in your region,
accompanied by our material support. Human words are too
frail to express what is needed; but we trust the Spirit to fortify
our meager supplications.

And we ask to receive yours, for us, in return.

Eleison, eleison, Kyrie eleison.

Ken Sehested
12 May 2022

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