Prayer is the foundation of intimacy with God, the "inward movement" that we make toward God. Thomas Merton broadens this vision by writing that prayer "means yearning for the simple presence of God, for a personal understanding of his word, for knowledge of his will and for capacity to hear and obey him." Sharing this vision, Geoffrey Wainwright maintains that spirituality is nothing less than the "combination of prayer and living."
All I know is that when I pray, I draw near to God. When I don't, my soul and spirit drift far, far away.
The purpose of the ancient monastic movement – the opus Dei – was to create a life of prayer as the "work of God," that act whereby we "place God upon our heart." Scripture may be the foundation of the relationship itself, for it is through revelation that this God is named and known, but intimacy with this revealed God is gained through the "presence" that comes in an act of prayer. As Quaker writer Douglas Steere has written:
It is not that he is not present at other times but that by this voluntary act of ours, the act of prayer, we are enabled to break with our outer preoccupations and to become aware of the presence and of what that presence does to search and to transform and to renew us and to send us back into life again.Click here to continue reading this post and to view the blog archive.
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