If I may, I would like to ask a question of all of you and share the reason I am asking. I had a conversation with someone quite special to me about the power of prayer and its capacity to actually influence anything at all, much less change in the world or a person's health or the quality of someone's life. Admittedly there is no way to produce evidence in such an argument.
We've all heard that adage, "All we can do now is pray," or "I'll pray for you." The other night, a dear friend shared something I deeply understood. She is presently going through a difficult passage and she sent out word to her close group of friends for prayer support, knowing they would indeed pray for her. They would not just promise prayers; they would offer them for her and she would receive a down pouring of grace. She trusted them and she had faith in that grace. It did not occur to her that any of her friends made that promise to her casually. They would keep their word. In my conversation about prayer with the friend I mentioned earlier, I said that there is no hard core proof and perhaps that is why commitment to prayer is often well-meaning but an oh-well type of thing. And it is in our nature to want to see proof - always that irritant of physical proof. But proof tends to translate in seeing the evidence that we are getting what we want.
Prayer is a funny sort of thing. It is like talking to air and musing with the stars at night. And yet, a presence is there, hiding behind the walls of the imagination. So I ask you, is prayer something real for you? I am especially interested, as I am teaching an upcoming class on Spiritual Direction. I have waited a while to teach this class but I feel that so many people are really seeking the type of direction that comes from the tools of that knowledge bank.
Prayer is certainly one of them but so is deep listening to your inner nature. I'll speak about that in my next post. For now, I would really appreciate it if you would share your thoughts about prayer. I love the way the old guard used to speak and so I leave you with this blessing:
Blessed be the journey that has taken you so far along in your life. Blessed be the willingness and fortitude you have to face each day. And blessed be the goodness in you to want to rest on sacred ground.