Christian meditation…

“Eastern meditation is an attempt to empty the mind; Christian meditation is an attempt to fill the mind.”

From my morning readings in “A Celebration of Discipline“, by Richard J. Foster.

Deep Meditation... by Sthe 55
Deep Meditation…, a photo by Sthe 55 on Flickr.

That’s what I want.  To fill my mind with God.  With His love, His grace, the beauty of His creation.  Then I can move forward with my life and my service.

The primary requirement…

“The primary requirement is a longing after God.”

From my morning readings in “A Celebration of Discipline“, by Richard J. Foster.

Safe Fortress by Ian Sane
Safe Fortress, a photo by Ian Sane on Flickr.

Afraid that you may not be suitable for a close relationship with God?  Remember this!

God has given us the Disciplines…

“God has given us the Disciplines of the spiritual life as a means of receiving his grace. The Disciplines allow us to place ourselves before God so that he can transform us.”

From my morning readings in “A Celebration of Discipline”, by Richard J. Foster.

rebirth by AlicePopkorn
rebirth, a photo by AlicePopkorn on Flickr.

God gives His grace to all of us.  But it is up to us to receive it.  To make ourselves fit, and open, and willing.  That is what the disciplines help us to do.  By performing the disciplines, we open ourselves to transformation.  That’s what I have sought all my life.

 

When we cannot pray…

“When we cannot pray, we let God be our prayer. Nor should we be frightened by the hardness of our heart: prayer will soften it. We give even our lack of prayer to God.”

From my morning readings in “Prayer – Finding the Heart’s True Home“, by Richard J. Foster.

The Fog - (Explored) by Glyn Lowe Photoworks
The Fog – (Explored), a photo by Glyn Lowe Photoworks on Flickr.

I tend to beat myself up for not remembering to pray, and the shame of that makes it even harder to return to my developing prayer relationship with God.  Help me to simply offer my lack of prayer to God as soon as I notice it!

We are part of his life

“We pass from thinking of God as part of our life to the realization that we are part of his life.”

From my morning readings in “Prayer – Finding the Heart’s True Home”, by Richard J. Foster.

at sunrise in my wild river…!!! by Denis Collette...!!!

at sunrise in my wild river…!!!, a photo by Denis Collette…!!! on Flickr.

At some point in our growth in prayer, focus starts changing.  I have not experienced this as being a simple switch – one moment focussed on self, the next focussed on God for the rest of my life.  Instead, it’s been a height I sometimes rise to.

 

Prayer catapults us…

“Prayer catapults us onto the frontier of the spiritual life. Of all the Spiritual Disciplines prayer is the most central because it ushers us into perpetual communion with the Father.”

From my morning readings in “A Celebration of Discipline”, by Richard J. Foster.

Red Square Nebula [1680x1050] by DUCKofD3ATH
Red Square Nebula [1680×1050], a photo by DUCKofD3ATH on Flickr.

Prayer is like dropping in to see your best friend, who is always glad to see you, and has things to share that enrich our lives. Only by praying can I build my spiritual muscles!

The grace of God…

“The grace of God is unearned and unearnable, but if we ever expect to grow in grace, we must pay the price of a consciously chosen course of action which involves both individual and group life.”

From my morning readings in “A Celebration of Discipline”, by Richard J. Foster.

Peach in bloom by inoc
Peach in bloom, a photo by inoc on Flickr.

In other words, I can’t just rest on God’s grace if I want a really wonderful relationship with Him.  I need to work at that relationship, which means working at myself and what I bring to that relationship.  And I believe that at the top of the list is working on how I relate to my brothers and sisters.