My Dear G-d: A young writer's prayers.
A dear teacher, friend, and mentor introduced me to her in 1982. I was struck by her faith and her ability to express herself in a real surreal, seriously funny, other-wordly down to earth way. She was an anchor for me when I was in my early twenties even though I thought I had rejected the likes of her. She died young long before I met her.
Tonight G-d sent her to visit me. She brought me comfort again as her lips moved gently from her grave. And I read these words which in her early twenties she shared only with G-d:
I cannot love Thee the way I want to. You are the slim crescent of a moon that I see and my self is the earth's shadow that keeps me from seeing all the moon. The crescent is very beautiful and perhaps that is all one like I am should or could see; but what I am afraid of, dear G-d is that my self shadow will grow so large that it blocks the whole moon, and that I will judge myself by the shadow that is nothing.
I do not know you G-d because I am in the way. Please help me to push myself aside..."
- From "A Prayer Journal," a new posthumous book by Flannery O'Conner set to be published in November, excerpted on pages 26-30 of the September 16, 2013 New Yorker