I am an Episcopalian.  I have been for most of my life.  This means…many things, and among them is the fact that I have many and odd passages from the Book of Common Prayer memorized.  Because they are beautiful; because they are frequently repeated; because I’m still trying to understand or live into what they mean. 

One of the prayers that I love is the General Thanksgiving which can be part of the prayers said in the Morning or Evening.  The title of this blog comes from that.

Almighty God, Father of all mercies,
we your unworthy servants give you humble thanks
for all your goodness and loving-kindness
to us and to all whom you have made.
We bless you for our creation, preservation,
and all the blessings of this life;
but above all for your immeasurable love
in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ;
for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.
And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies,
that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise,
not only with our lips, but in our lives,
by giving up ourselves to your service,
and by walking before you
in holiness and righteousness all our days;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honor and glory throughout all ages. Amen.
(BCP, pg 101)

We bless God…for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.

For me it is the simplest, most beautiful, most hopeful, and accurate way of stating the the deep challenge of life.  With this statement we acknowledge both that grace and glory are not always present, and that the great promise of faith is the means of grace and the hope of glory, here and now.

People live in that tension.  I live in that tension.