Thursday, June 19, 2008

Lessons in humility

Do you pray? If so, who taught you to pray? What is your undersanding of prayer and how does it influence your image of God (or whatever higher power you recognize)?

How we relate to one another can often reflect in the manner after which we relate to God. If someone has grown up in a household where there was much bullying or control then there very well may be a relationship of fear created between that person and God. By contrast, if life comes easily then we may be tempted to expect that God will acquiesce to our every desire.

To be truly wise is to understand that no matter how much power and influence we may have in some spheres, there are always others in which we are perpetual students, and one of these areas is that of faith. We can never presume to have arrived at the pinacle of knowledge when it comes to faith because faith is about relationships, with ourselves, with others and with God. If our conversation with God is genuine, we will be drawn ever deeper into the realization of this truth, and the fact that each of us really plays a very small part in the grand scheme of things.

There has been much discussion and debate about using the Lord's Prayer in various settings as a recognition of faith and not all the details have been flattering for either proponents or antagonists, but it is by no accident that Jesus taught his followers to pray using this precise formula.

Despite our deepest darkest desires, none of us is God, and we do well to acknowledge the fact that we all need to rely on a source other than ourselves for guidance through life. Meanwhile, we are all pilgrims on a journey toward our ultimate destiny, our final abode. From time to time, we do get glimpses of this destination even as we continue on the way, and these are indeed moments to be savoured.

Like a loving parent, God gives us all the food we need so that we can be nourished and strengthened. He never gives us too much of this special food, but just enough to tide us over to the next encounter. Between the moments of our lives when we encounter the sacred, we too are on a journey. We learn, we practice and we teach the lessons of forgiveness, of acceptance and of unbridled love.

Make time for prayer in your life. You might be surprised at the outcome.


Anonymous said...

Concerning the prayer time in the legislature, my only comment is "that is such a Canadian vote!"

Anonymous said...

Or perhaps to make your life your prayer. Consider what could happen if each of us chose to live a life in which our words and actions reflected those words that we use to speak to God? How many of us pause to reflect on the words that we use to speak to God in formal prayer or in those quiet reflective moments? Are these the same words and actions we use in daily life in interaction with those who share on our journey?

Anonymous said...

This posting is so well written. I have had to read it several times in order for it to sink in. The second comment to this posting is also very thought provoking. Prayer is so important in our lives. I am trying to learn how to pray. Sometimes it is very hard to remain focussed, without my mind wandering all over the place. Today I said a different prayer because it was all I could say. "Lord, you know my prayers in my heart. I offer them to you knowing you will hear them."