Our times are in your hands, O God, as a canvas of your love for us;
the palette of your wisdom colors every moment of each day.
Yet how often we see the strokes of your care as moments of fortune;
as events birthed by luck;
as mysterious gifts we somehow deserve.
And when the dark pigments of sin intrude, we call out to you, O Lord.
In our anger we demand—“Scrape it off, O God! Start over again!”
“Pastels, dear God, only bright pastels will do!”
“I hate these dark colors; how can I trust you?”
We demand to be free in all we do,
but with the coming of pain, how freely we blame you.
And in our joys how boldly we forget you.
Are we really so free as we think?
Or are we bound by pleasure and our hatred of pain?
The slate of this year lies blank to my eyes as it begins;
but to you a portrait of grace is present in full view;
with forms, shapes, and shades of multiple hues.
Our times are in your hands, O Lord. As a canvas of your love for us,
and of faith in the face of change and directed chance.