God grant me a memory that is long,
that I may be slow to react,
quick to question,
cautious of conforming,
ready to restore what is missing,
reform what is misshapen,
and heal what is broken.
Grant me a memory that is rooted
so deeply in time,
that it reaches back past centuries,
not blinded by Victorians,
or Enlightenments, by Romantic movements,
Red Scares, Baby Booms, or Colonialism,
a memory impervious
to rhetorics of Fear or Progress,
of evolving aways and freedom froms,
nihilism and despair.
Grant me a memory that is free from fads,
and the fickle narratives of fashions,
that can look past glamours and glosses,
that can read the present through the logic of the past,
and the past through the lens of the eternal.
And, Father, grant me a hope that is not mired
in the bog of nostalgia,
who looks to human past for answers
to questions that have never been encountered,
a hope with an imagination strong enough to
see the persistent flaws in human undertakings,
with a vision that perceives the Achilles' heel
in each rose-colored utopia.
Grant me a hope that looks to the future,
who knows that whatever key
will unlock the cure for human suffering
is found not in conserving systems of the past,
or resisting the passage of time,
but in the One who makes all things new.