Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Keeping in touch with God

One of the things that brought me to the Jesus Prayer was the desire and longing to have more, much more of God. Having a time of prayer first thing in the morning is one thing, but then going out, getting caught up in the busyness of work, it's all too easy to forget about God. The intimacy I experience - sometimes, not always - in the morning disappears all too quickly and has be sought again the next time I stop for prayer. So my relationship with God is stop-start, stop-start, all the time. I miss Him, this 'connection we have', even if it is largely devoid of 'feeling'. You can't live on feelings, but you can't live without connection, and it's that disconnection which is most of each day, which I have always struggled with to a greater or lesser degree.

So for me, the discovery of the Jesus Prayer addresses those concerns, and gives me a wonderul means of staying in tough with God, and keeping connected throughout the day.

In "Living the Jesus Prayer" it seems that Irma Zalewski has been there before me. This is what she says about desiring the presence of God:

"The desire ceaseless prayer is really the desire to experience the presence of God, a longing to know that, in Jesus, God truly lives in us, is always there for us. One of the great tragedies of our lives, and the lives of so many Christians, is not to experience that presence. That is why, so often, our faith does not become truly real for us. We do what is required of us, but our hearts are not touched, we do not know the joy of it.

And yet, this is why God became incarnate in Christ, why he suffered, died and rose again, why he sent us the Holy Spirit - to  be always present with us. This is the meaning of the mystery of his mystical Body, the Church. This is the meaning of the sacraments, the meaning of our salvation in Jesus, of teh coming of the Kingdom, of the promise of heaven. Our religion surely does not make sense unless it opens us to this immense, glorious mystery of God's presence in the world, and in our own deepest self, unless it offers us the way to enter this mystery and experience it every moment of our lives.

How can this desire for the presence of God be fulfilled? Only through prayer..(the Jesus Prayer) is a simple way of being in the presence of God....we can practise it anywhere, at any time."
"Living the Jesus Prayer: Irma Zaleski (pages 28-29)

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