Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A Thanksgiving Prayer

By now the previous nine thousand miles are seeming like a bit of a dream. It helps me to look at our photos to remember what an incredible, event filled year it has been and how our lives have been so enriched by the people we have met and places we have seen. One memory that stands out today is our visit to the home of Robert Louis Stevenson in Vailima, Western Samoa. Stevenson spent his last years in Western Samoa writing poetry and short stories. He was loved by the natives that worked on his plantation because he worked right along side of them, slept outside with them, learned their language and retold their stories in his own words. It's interesting how we are able to recreate families when we are so far away from the ones that we love, especially at holiday times.

The following is a prayer written by Robert Louis Stevenson at his home in Vailima. I will be sharing it as we celebrate American Thanksgiving in Whangarei, New Zealand and hope you will find it beautiful enough to share around your table as well!

R of Rutea

On Thanksgiving Day


Behold our family here assembled.
We thank Thee for this place in which we dwell;
for the love that unites us; for the peace that accorded us this day;
for the hope with which we expect the morrow;
for the health, the work, the food, and the bright skies, that make our lives delightful;
for our friends in all parts of the earth, and our friendly helpers in this foreign isle.

Let peace abound in our small company.
Purge out of every heart the lurking grudge.
Give us grace and strength to forbear and to persevere.
Offenders, give us the grace to accept and to forgive offenders.
Forgetful ourselves, help us to bear cheerfully the forgetfulness of others.
Give us courage and gaiety and the quiet mind.
Spare to us our friends, soften to us our enemies.

Bless us, if it may be, in all our innocent endeavors.
If it may not, give us the strength to encounter that which is to come,
that we be brave in peril, constant in tribulation, temperate in wrath,
and in all changes of fortune and down to the gates of death,
loyal and loving one to another.

As the clay to the potter,
as the windmill to the wind,
as children of their sire,
we beseech of Thee this help and mercy.
At 11/5/2011 6:07 AM (utc) Rutea's position was 35°26.21'S 174°25.02'E

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