Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lenten Discipline Update 8: Ps 63; dry and weary prayer

Sometimes I just don't feel like praying, there I said it...

O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you
my soul thirsts for my
my flesh faints for you
in a dry and weary land where there is no water
Ps 63

that is how prayer feels to me sometimes... like a dry and weary land. Prayer is dry and I'm weary.
That is why I haven't posted any Lenten Discipline updates... I've been in the dry and weary land of not feeling prayer.

Part of my own practice for Lent is silence and solitude in prayer, so that I can listen.
Which is that much harder when I'm not feeling like it.
When I'm doing 'talking' prayer, at least I can talk about not feeling like praying
When its silent prayer, what can I do?
so random thoughts float into my head.

What was the name of my first cat when I was a kid? Pussy-willow. Why did I name a cat pussy-willow?
Bacon, I like bacon.
which reminds me I like fruit loops too. but Michael Pollan says fruit loops aren't food because they change the color of the milk.
I bet we need milk.
DAMN! I did it again...

I fill in silent time because I want prayer time to be effective.
There must be a result, if not an instant result than a result within a reasonable amount of time, and I get to define reasonable.

That is why prayer became dry.
I wanted to define prayer,
wanted it to be what I wanted, which is effective.
I wanted there to be some result to my prayer.

Just wait

that is what I heard after I finally pieced together about five minutes of silence..
just wait.

this isn't about what you want, it isn't about results yet.

just shut up and listen

Let the thoughts go, do worry that you them, just let them float on through

Don't try to accomplish anything or learn or discover anything

Just listen and wait

That is what I got. I should wait. Prayer isn't a task to be completed or a tool for the accomplishment of some item on my agenda. Prayer is for its own sake, and therefore it takes time. It isn't about benefits and rewards. not instantly anyway... Not right now for me anyway. Right now it is about the discipline of being still and silent for no other purpose, whether I like it or not.

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