January 26, 2016

Prayer: Communicating with God

“Prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God.”  –St Theresa of Avila.

A community of God’s friends!  Now that is a simple, efficient way of defining the church: a group of people who are listening to what He says, modeling their lives after His attributes, speaking to Him from the depth of their hearts.  A community comprised of the intimate friends of the King!  

Walter Winchell once penned that, “A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.  For God’s part, that is precisely what he has done for us.  He has walked into our lives when the rest of the world was walking out.  When all else failed us, on our most desperate day, Jesus took on flesh to be with us in every respect. To be with us He became frail and vulnerable, to experience our pain and fear he lived a life of deprivation and need, to rescue us from the power of sin and death he suffered and died, to redeem us as God’s beloved children He rose again.  When it seems as though nothing and no one can save us, Jesus walks into our lives even as everyone else is walking out.  Truly, God is our friend but friendship are two way streets.

For our part, being a friend must mean nothing less than greeting and welcoming this divine Visitor.  When He knocks we open the door and invite Him in.  As He walks into our lives we are given the opportunity to greet Him with our finest gifts, to speak to Him in the most glowing terms, and to open our homes to Him completely.  A community of friends communicating with our God is very much what we are called to be.    

I long for us to be a more prayerful community.  “Prayer,” said John Wesley,” is where the action is,” and I long for us to be where the action is.  Daughters of the King have been faithful in leading us into a more prayerful life for several years but it was no longer possible to rely on a few faithful women to pray for the rest of us.  Last October I asked our Senior Warden to form a committee to suggest ways of broadening our commitment to prayer so that it engaged the whole community: men, women and children.   As a symbol of this new commitment a dormant room in the basement was converted into a place devoted to prayer.  You are all invited to make use of that space whenever you want to pray.  In November many of you participated in a teaching designed to improve your ability to pray for others. 

In 2016 I hope that we will become accustomed to opening and closing every meeting in prayer, that we will have several occasions when we come together solely for the purpose of communicating with our Lord, that our desire for a response from God would be keen and we would be looking and listening for his Word as a normal part of our daily lives.    

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