Pause + Pray

A Prayer for Those I Do Not Know

A restaurant with a diner neon light at night.


At a restaurant recently, I looked around at all the people seated nearby. And though I will never know them—or even see them again—I thought about how we are sharing a sacred moment. As it says in Matthew 18:20, “Where two or three are gathered. . . .”


God of all of us,
You led each person to this spot for a reason.
The faces are unfamiliar to me but I cannot help
but think we are not disparate and disconnected
strangers sharing a space.
We are, each of us, though vastly different,
united as children of a loving God.
We are not separate individuals but one large, diverse party
breaking bread and sharing a kind of mutual fellowship.
Let this prayer for these stranger-siblings
find its way to you, O God, and keep us safe.


Next time you are in a public place, say a prayer for the many people you will never know.

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