Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Lenten Disciplines 3

Quick update today. Lot's to do.

Yesterday I mentioned the fact that the Divine Office seemed to go by too quickly.
So this morning I slowed down, sang the responses to the readings. At the end of the morning, noon and afternoon office are two prayers, one the prayer for the week and one the closing prayer. In between the two I inserted brief devotional readings. I found a daily devotional book on the writings of C.S.Lewis, so I read that. I also have a book of various brief excepts of the writings of Henri Nouwen. I think I will carry that around with the Divine Office and insert a brief reading in my practice throughout the day. They are not long, but Nouwen is always good. This morning's excerpt was about prayer. 'If we live a prayerful life, then there is a growing desire to spend more time with God and God alone... the desire to pray and to spend time with God and god alone is always growing.'

Which reminds me that my work is not just labor for a paycheck, but prayer in and of itself. The studying and writing, planning, listening, study and preparing I do, are all forms of prayer. Launching into work without a time of silence and contemplation leads me to just see this as labor. Beginning with prayer reminds me that it is all a form of prayer. Perhaps I won't way this well, but instead of rushing to an end result for my labors; a sermon, a lesson, a plan, I can slowly savor these things as prayerful connection to God.

read this Nouwen quote for the noon prayers and thought I'd share; ' Spiritual disciplines are not ways to eradicate all our desires but ways to order them so that they can serve one another and together serve God. --Bread for the Journey

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