Jesus of my Neighbourhood…and my distracted heart


This prayer is truly a lenten prayer from Karen Wilk, posted on Missio Alliance page here.    It is repentant, longing to turn.  It is honest, it is willing to respond.   I am here for what Missio Alliance are putting out there so if you are interested you should check them out.     I am deeply challenged by this prayer and have been deeply challenged by Karen Wilk when she led us in Go Local learning.    What is being shook loose from our theology and our church life – and what is good and needs to be nurtured?  I’m willing bet it has everything to do with those “others” we pass by so so so so often and has everything to do with us letting go.

Jesus, have mercy on us all.


A Lenten Prayer of Repentance for When We Have Failed Our Neighbourhood.

After this…  Luke 10:1

After this, the Lord appointed seventy others and sent them on ahead of him in pairs  to every town and place where he himself intended to go.

Failure to love

I avoided my neighbour today

I saw her out of the corner of my eye and turned the other way
After this?

We knocked on the door only to learn that her husband had passed six months ago.

We didn’t know.

No one on our street knew.
After this?

I was trimming a tree out front and felt a tap on my shoulder.

I looked around and there was a little old lady standing there.

She said, “I’m moving tomorrow and after 37 years in this neighbourhood, I just thought someone should know.”
After this?

Seventeen dead in a high school hallway

Sexual harassment, loss of honesty,

Refugees, disasters and criminality

Bombs, boasts, bribes and brutality

Our racism, violence, prejudice and hypocrisy
After this?

The havoc wrecked on Your beautiful creation


The poverty—physical, emotional, relational, spiritual

We ignore or avoid

or allow

Our greed, materialism, selfishness, pride.
After this?

You appoint and send us.

You appoint and send us?! Luke 10:1

After we argue over who’s the greatest Luke 9:46-48

After we claim Your Name for ourselves

To the exclusion of others Luke 9:49-50

After we want to torch the whole village Luke 9:51-56


After we make so many excuses Luke 9:57-62

We’re still making excuses.
After this?

Forgive us, Lord.

For we know not what we do. Luke 23:34

Or do we? Sometimes we do…

And we still do—or don’t, when we should.
Though our sins be as scarlet, make us white as snow. Isaiah 1:18

Help us to forgive ourselves

and one another

and sometimes our neighbours

Though truth be told

It’s likely we need their forgiveness more than they need ours.

Remove the log in our eyes

that we might humbly come along side those with specks in their own.

Matthew 7:3,4
After this?

After this, may we know…
The Word has become flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. And we have seen the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, like Father, like Son, Generous inside and out, true from start to finish. John 1:14

After this

May we know


Why You came

Why You lived among

How You showed us the Way

How much we needed You

Need You

To live,

To love

God WITH us.

After this

We know

May we know

You died for us

What burdens You bear

What grace You give

What love You share

After this

May we know

You rose from the grave

And continue to choose to hang out with us

To use us

To love us

To make us part of Your Story

—after this!

And you fill us with Your love



After this

Renew us again and again

Restore us – Send us

That we might remain Luke 10:7

Among and with our neighbours…the Kingdom come near!

After this then
“Look! Look! God has moved into the neighborhood, making his home with men and women! They’re his people, he’s their God”. Revelation 21:3

–Karen Wilk

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