On Yom Kippur the questions of who we are and what we might become collide, as do the questions of what we’ve done with our lives and how much time we have left. The path of righteousness is paved with questions. This prayer echoes the Un’tanneh Tokef, an amazing and powerful prayer recited on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. To listen while you read, click the triangle in the bar below. The text follows. This appears in This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day from CCAR Press.
The Path of Righteousness
G-d of what was and what will be,
Of what might have been and might still be.
G-d of past and future,
Of memories and beginnings.
G-d of the finite and the infinite,
Of moments and possibilities.
What is my life?
And what of my death?
What of my choices?
And what of my future?
What of this distance?
And what of the endless sky?
What of the darkness?
And what of the light?
G-d of the seen and unseen,
Of the known and unknowable.
Teach me patience and understanding
As the mysteries of my life unfold.
Teach me to live gently, love generously,
And to walk with strength and confidence.
Teach me to give and to receive,
Sharing Your blessings in joy and sorrow.
Teach me to see others through Your eyes,
As children of G-d.
And teach me to see myself and my life as You do,
Blessed are You, Adonai,
Source of life,
Guardian and Shelter,
You set Your people on the path of righteousness,
Holiness and charity,
Kindness and grace,
To return to You in service.
Blessed is Your Holy Name.
© 2017 CCAR Press from This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day
Postscript: Here’s a link to prayers and stories for the Yamim Noraim, the High Holy Days, listed by topic.
Please check out my ELItalk video, “Falling in Love with Prayer,” and This Grateful Heart: Psalms and Prayers for a New Day. For reprint permissions and usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!” To receive my latest prayers via email, please subscribe (on the home page). You can also connect on Facebook and Twitter.
Photo Source: Photo by Martin Kozák, Wikimedia Commons