this week has been a scattered mess, with Wednesday dedicated to cleaning out our church basement after a "not entirely unexpected" sump pump failure. I made what seems to be a half-way decent attempt to save the 3 month old nursery carpet, but we shall see. the scattering has taken me out of my normal rhythm of reflection, but today I returned and utilized a book I found in our church's "library". the book is John Baillie's A Diary of Private Prayer. Dr. Baillie (1949) gathered insights on prayer from several different sources, but the reading from today struck me and so I thought I would share it with you. ...let me not, when this morning prayer is said, think of my worship ended and spend the day in forgetfulness of Thee. Rather from these moments of quietness let light go forth, and joy, and power, that will remain with me through all the hours of the day; Keeping me chaste in thought; Keepiming me temperate and truthful in speech; Keeping me faithful and diligent in my work; Keeping me humble in my estimation of myself; Keeping me honourable and generous in my dealings with others; Keeping me loyal to every hallowed memory of the past; Keeing me mindful of my eternal destiny as a child of Thine. (p. 9)
As I have not been terribly 'community-disposed' this week due to some challenges, I think this was a refreshing prayer because of the potential for transformation in a community that would live this prayer out in interaction with each other and with the issues of contemporary culture and society. Again, this is a place where spiritual formation does not have to be a hyper-individualized, Western modernist psycho-spiritual (thanks Doug) pep rally. It can indeed be the catalyst for the Kingdom to come, "here as it is where You are."
listening: Norah Jones reading: "That Distant Land" (still), Wendell Berry