Isaiah 58:8
Then your light shall break forth like the dawn,
and your healing shall spring up quickly;
your vindicator shall go before you,
the glory of the Lord shall be your rearguard.

Reflections this week are by The Rev. Michael Wallens

There is a beautiful prayer in Isaiah 58 but it’s a bit hidden in a bevy of “if-then” statements. Read the prayer below…

May your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing quickly appear.
May your righteousness go before you, and the glory of the Lord be your rear guard.
May you call, and the Lord answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: “Here am I.”
May your light rise in the darkness, and your night become like the noonday.
May the Lord guide you always; he will satisfy your needs and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.
And may you find your joy in the Lord.

How there needs to be a rebuilding work in our immigration system today! We live in a broken world. In every direction there are breaches which are wide and deep. There are broken hearts and broken homes. We need to listen to God and those who cross our paths.

We know the kingdom of God is a kingdom of justice and we know its people must do more than be religious; they must be the hands and feet of Jesus to the poor, outcast, oppressed, hungry, needy, sick, and even to people that are difficult to deal with. If……Then.

Please pray with me.

Prayer for Reflection – Immigration & Lent

Lord God,
You call us to journey with you through the wilderness this Lenten season.
Our wilderness is a scary place, filled with distractions from the work of Kingdom building. But, we have freely and readily accepted this journey; guide our hearts, minds, and feet.
On this journey, we now turn our attention to our brothers and sisters who are immigrants.
We remember the story of the baby Jesus. When you sent your son to earth, he immediately became an asylum seeker, chased by violence.
Many of our sisters and brothers are chased from their homes and from the ones they love by violence, hunger, and lack of opportunity. For them, this journey is not a choice.
Be with the baby who will never know her birth place, except through the fears of her older siblings.
Be with the young man who must travel many dangerous miles to find the slimmest hope of feeding his loved ones.
Be with the young woman who must cross dangerous waters to secure safety for her livelihood.
Be with the grandparents who cannot move on and must say goodbye, certain they will not see their grandchildren grow up.
Be with the young parents who put themselves in danger of sexual violence to give their children opportunity.
Be with the law enforcement officers and court systems who look for spaces of compassion in laws meant to exclude.
Be with and move the hearts of our elected leaders who have the power to make positive change to allow people to stay in the places they are from.
Be with each of us, O Lord.

As we see our immigrant sisters and brothers, show us Jesus the immigrant in them — not only the fear and pain, but also the hope and promise their lives hold.
Make these 40 days a Living Lent in which we come to know you more deeply.


Questions for reflection

  • How are you supporting immigrant communities on the move?
  • How can we become a more welcoming and respectful country to those on the move?


Michael Wallens is an Episcopal priest who serves five churches in the Big Bend region of Far West Texas. He also serves as co-chair of the Rio Grande Borderland Ministries in the Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande (RGBM). RGBM serves people along the border from Big Bend to Arizona.

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