We Are Called to Pay Attention

We Are Called to Pay Attention

Amanda Udis-Kessler

Many: This morning* and all mornings, we are called to pay attention.

One. We are called to pay attention to our individual lives, to our delights and pains. We are called to understand and cherish ourselves, to take good care of ourselves, to know ourselves as loving and worthy of love. In paying attention to our lives, we give thanks for all that is good in them and work to make the best decisions we can to help us live fully and joyfully.

Many: Today and all days, we are called to pay attention.

One: We are called to pay attention to the people in our lives, to celebrate their joys with them and to tend to them in their struggles. We are called to bring our compassion, kindness, and patience to our relationships even as we are grateful for the compassion, kindness and patience others show to us. In paying attention to the people in our lives, we give thanks for their presence and work to support them to the best of our abilities.

Many: Throughout our lives, we are called to pay attention.

One: We are called to pay attention to the society in which we live. We are called to understand the ways in which the lives of people we don’t know, and never will know, are made harder by political and economic policies that value some kinds of people over other kinds of people. In paying attention to our society, we give thanks for the many people who are working for justice for everyone, and we join in working with them so that all people are treated with the dignity and worth they possess.

Many: In all that we do, we are called to pay attention.

One: We are called to pay attention to the natural world around us. We are called to understand how our decisions help the natural world to flourish or cause it harm. In paying attention to the natural world, we give thanks for the ways it sustains and enriches our lives, and we commit to living sustainably so that all beings have the chance to live and so that many generations after our own can celebrate the planet and its gifts.

All: Love, compassion, gratitude, and the demands of justice call us to pay attention. As we pay attention, we bless ourselves, each other, our society, and the world.

*“afternoon” for afternoon services