Revelation 21:10, 22 – 22:5 – Tree of Life Confession and Meditation

A confession and meditation for the brokenness in our world, based on Revelation’s image of the Tree of Life, whose leaves are for the healing of the nations.

You can print the labyrinth for people to trace with a finger while they listen to the readings, or make a large version for people to walk through. There is a colour version, a black and white which you can colour yourself if you like, and a plain version, to which you can add leaves. See below for links to images.

The layrinth has three outer sections and a central spiral, which leads to the centre and then out by a short route. You could use each outer section to pray to one person of the trinity, then bring your thoughts together to pray to God who is one as you reach the centre. Finally, determine how you will make your prayers part of your life as you leave the labyrith and walk back out into the world.

tree labyrinth FR

Click image for full-colour, black and white or plain version.

‘Tree of Life’ Meditation

Right back at the start of the Bible, we hear of the Tree of Life. Broken humanity is kept away from the tree for their own protection and banished from God’s garden. We live now in this time of apart-ness, longing for the healing and restoration that is God’s kingdom.

Father God,
we acknowledge the brokenness of our world, of your world, and we confess our part in that brokenness. Forgive us, we pray, not for any merit of our own, but for your mercy’s sake.
Amen

In another garden, 2000 years ago, a sorrowful Jewish man kneels and whispers, “Your will, not mine, be done.” Another garden quickly follows, and a tomb.

Jesus our brother,
the price you paid for our redemption was great indeed. You faced the wall of separation that we had built, and bore on your shoulders the curse that was ours to bear. Great is your salvation.
Amen

But the tomb is broken open from the inside, and the death and mourning and crying and pain that have marred God’s creation for so long are defeated and crushed. The garden is restored and the Tree of Life sprouts again in ground that once was cursed.

Holy Spirit, our guide,
We know that the power of death is ultimately defeated, but we live in a world that still crumbles and dies. Grant us vison to see the garden reclaiming the ruins of the broken world and beautifying that which was spoiled.
Amen

We see the tree growing in the city of the world, and its leaves are for the healing of the nations. Here, God lives with all who love him, Eden restored. We live under God’s light as the sun, and drink freely from the water of life. The curse is no more and we walk, as once we did, with The Lord God in the cool of the day.

Merciful Lord,
May we take these leaves, which are for the healing of the nations, and apply them to the wounds and scars of our time. May we, who see your face, work in the light of your presence towards the restoring of your garden here on earth.
Amen

 

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Reading

Revelation 21:10, Revelation 21:22 – 22:5 New International Version

And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God.

I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.

Credits

New International Version
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


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