Micah 6:8 (NRSV)
He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Luke 19:10 (NIV)
“The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
Matthew 5:14,16 (NRSV)
“You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid…let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”
by Ashly Cooley, Executive Assistant to Locations & Care at Resurrection
Most people are taught to pray using a model like this:
You may have learned different words, but the same basic model. I try to use this model of praying daily but it can be time consuming. This type of prayer takes time and sometimes that time commitment keeps me away from praying because I am trying to find a big enough time gap to fit all of that in.
Prayer doesn’t have to include all those things though. Frederick Buechner (whose life of wonderful writing ministry ended last week at age 96) said, “Everybody prays whether [you think] of it as praying or not. The odd silence you fall into when something very beautiful is happening or something very good or very bad. The ah-h-h-h! that sometimes floats up out of you as out of a Fourth of July crowd when the sky-rocket bursts over the water. The stammer of pain at somebody else s pain. The stammer of joy at somebody else’s joy. Whatever words or sounds you use for sighing with over your own life. These are all prayers in their way.” *
Paul tells us in Thessalonians to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Praying without ceasing for me looks like praying little prayers at any time. As someone comes to mind, I can bow my head and say, “Dear Jesus, please be with Janet today. Help her to experience your peace and comfort while she heals from surgery.” “Thank you for this beautiful weather, Jesus.” Praying using praise, gratitude, confession, blessings, and supplications in a single prayer is a great model, but all prayer matters. All prayer brings us closer to God, so don’t let lack of time keep you from praying. God loves nothing more than to hear quick prayers from you throughout the day.
God, we long to connect with you and be in your presence. Help us find different ways to pray. Whether it is reading a written prayer or hymn, praying through art, praying and walking, praying using centering prayer–they all bring us closer to you, which is where our hearts long to be. Amen.