A Prayer for all who love God’s creations, both great and small.
I was inspired to write this prayer because, as the seasons change and the colder weather rolls in, I can tell that my beloved old lady, Tinkerbell, is starting to slow down. The vet has prescribed some liquid pain medicine for her and I put it over her food every morning. It seems to help, but I can clearly see that she and I are both getting older. Even Zeus the cat is starting to slow down a bit.
Tinkerbell is a rescue, so it is hard to know for certain how old she is. The vet thinks she might be somewhere between 14 and 16 years old. Zeus the cat is twnety-one. I got him when he was a kitten and we have been friends for over two decades.
I hope my animal friends have many long and healthy years left. I am grateful for every day I have with them. My love them for them inspired me to write the following prayer. Please feel free to use this prayer in your own personal devotions or to adapt it to a worship setting. I think it might work well on the Feast Day of St. Francis or perhaps for a service of the blessing of the animals.
A Prayer for Pet Lovers
O God of All Creatures Great and Small:
Thank you, O Lord of All, for making all the animals. You made the water overflow with living creatures and crafted the birds that soar through the sky. You created the livestock, the creatures of the earth, and the animals that roam the wilderness. You molded the delicate wings of the butterfly and sharpened the lion’s teeth. You set the wild horses free to race the wind and wrote the song of the mighty whale.
Thank you for all the animals, O God, but especially thank you for our beloved companions:
We praise you for friends with feathers, scales, and fur. Thank you for proud felines and loyal canines. Thank you for service animals and animals with jobs. Thank you for guide dogs, emotional support animals, animal friends who alert us to allergies, seizures, and our blood sugar levels.
Thank you for animal companions who comfort us and keep us safe during flash backs and crises of mental health. Thank you for animal friends who bring comfort to hospital, schools, and nursing homes. Thank you for all working animals and the special gifts they share with us.
Thank you for the animal friends that are still with us. Please bless them and give them long and healthy lives. Help us to be good stewards of all your creation.
Thank you for all the pets that we have loved and that have gone home to be with you. May we be reunited with them one day when we enter your kingdom. May their happy faces, joyous chirps, wagging tales, and gentle purrs greet as at the gates of Heaven.
O God of the Sparrow and God of the Whale, we see your glorious handiwork from the arctic to the equator. All creation declares Your glory. May we treat your creatures with loving kindness and walk gently through the world with all living things.
About the author: Rev. Rebecca L. Holland, M.Div. OSL is an ordained elder serving in the Susquehanna Conference of the UMC. She is proud of her intersectional identity as a visually-impaired Filipino-American clergy woman. She is the author of Through My Good Eye: A Memoir in Verse, The United Methodist Church and Disability, and Hope for the Broken: Using Writing to Find God’s Grace. She blogs about faith, books, and disability awareness at BeckieWrites.com.
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