PRAYING

For those who are trying to find God, prayer should be a pleasurable experience since it is nothing but an attempt to seek his presence as a friend. Ye most of us find our prayer lacking in joy. Is it, perhaps, because we don’t really understand the nature of prayer?

The common illusion is that we think we take the initiative. No, it is God who tries to get our attention, waiting for our response. Our part is to give him time and attention, to respond joyfully to his presence.

Words are the usual means of responding. But more important than words is my heart’s response to God’s Word, my total presence to his abiding presence in myself, in people, in creation, in Scripture and the Sacraments.

The busier I am, the more I have need to give him time to find me.
But how, precisely?
My presence to God- as to a friend- is conditioned by time and space. So, first I must give him time. How much of the daily 1,440 minutes he gives me will I give to him?

As for space, where do I want to talk intimately with my friend? Certainly, not in a noisy place where his or her voice is drowned. God’s voice is best heard in silence and solitude- of my mind, my heart, and my body.

Effective communication calls for effective listening. Do I listen long enough to God’s silent voice in the depths of my heart?

God always answers our prayers. But often times we wonder why we do not get what we pray for. He answers our praters in his own way, in his own time. He knows what’s best for us and this may not always be that which we pray for. With faith, and in time, we will learn to understand his special message for us through his answers to our prayers.

Prayer mus become a very important part of my life. I pray when I take time out in silence and solitude to listen to what God has to tell me, in the very core of my being.

– From PRESENCE Prayers for Busy People Prayer Book
Copyright ST.PAUL PUBLICATIONS, MAKATI 1990
ISBN 971-504-083-7

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