Monday, March 31, 2014
Daring to get involved in the Practice of His Presence has by now taken many of us into uncharted waters. It is one thing to pray each day, but it is another to commit ourselves to intentionally be in His presence for thirty minutes a day. And now, we are at a point of adding an additional ten more minutes to that daily schedule. Indeed, it is somewhere we are not accustomed to walking. Certainly, one of the things we have learned is that old schedules no longer enable us to do this new thing. The old schedule of a few minutes praying and reading worked for that process, but it fails us when we start getting into prolonged spiritual devotional time.
As we come to this juncture in the Practice of His Presence we may be wondering if it feasible or realistic to go into more of a time commitment when we have struggled with where we are. I remember some years ago being involved over a two year period with a group of about 20 folks who covenanted together to get up at 5:00 AM on Sunday morning to pray for the church and its worship services. Most of us found it to be new praying ground. I must confess there were some Sunday morning when I made it to my appointed place to pray and soon fell asleep. When I woke up about all I could say was that I was in the right place trying to do the right thing. I was being obedient to what I sensed God calling me to do. My spirit was stronger than my body some Sundays. Failure or success, it was a good place to be walking.
So, plod on. Pray on. Keep breaking the long period of time into smaller segments each filled with its own schedule. Try entering into times of silence where listening is the goal. When the mind wanders, call it back by repeating over and over a prayer sentence like, "O Lamb of God, that takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on me." Use those repetitious words to bring your mind and heart back to the same place so that the silence comes with the quiet voice of God.