Change us, God, into the likeness
of yourself, through perfect grace;
let your loving faith unite us,
till in each we see your face.
If you are our common parent
in whose image we are made,
then our varied traits, our being,
in your person are displayed.
In your presence all are welcome,
welcome, just as we are formed,
and where prejudice divides us
let our vision be reformed.
In the tension of deciding
may your gracious spirit lend
openness and understanding,
help our enmity to end.
Andrew Pratt 24/4/2021 Written in response to the Chester & Stoke on Trent Methodist Synod discussion on the report ‘God in Love Unites Us’.
Words © 2021 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.stainer.co.uk. Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
Tune: CHAPEL BRAE (Singing the Faith 610); LOVE DIVINE (Stainer)
When arguments are brewing we don’t notice,
it seems that tension builds with every word,
we say things while not hearing one another,
like children in a playground, quite absurd!
It could have been a cosy Armageddon,
the words had seemed innocuous and bland,
yet hidden in each phrase, each idle sentence
were thoughts designed to undermine each stand.
If we could simply seek a gracious outcome
when others hurt and harass, fault or harm,
a look inspired by love could turn the tables,
could echo hidden need, befriend, disarm.
© Andrew Pratt 3/5/2019