Breath Prayer: on inhale – Wake, on exhale – Up!
Lenten Reflection Week 5, Day 1
Thus says the LORD:
Lo, I am about to create new heavens
and a new earth;
The things of the past shall not be remembered
or come to mind.
Instead, there shall always be rejoicing and happiness
in what I create;
For I create Jerusalem to be a joy
and its people to be a delight;
I will rejoice in Jerusalem
and exult in my people.
No longer shall the sound of weeping be heard there,
or the sound of crying;
No longer shall there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not round out his full lifetime;
He dies a mere youth who reaches but a hundred years,
and he who fails of a hundred shall be thought accursed.
They shall live in the houses they build,
and eat the fruit of the vineyards they plant.
This week begins the journey into praying the hours. Christine Valters Paintner calls this the “sanctification of time.” That is nice. I will keep that idea with me.
Part of my job, well, most of my job, is to pray the hours at SU. Prepare the short liturgies, recruit leaders, and participate in prayer. The most difficult task is to capture the sacredness of the moment during prayer after hustling and bustling to set the chapel. I try to incorporate practices that remind me of the sacredness of what I’m doing but occasionally, I get caught up in the task of preparing the prayer rather than in the task of preparing my own prayer space within my heart.
This prayer space within my heart is a co-creation between myself and the God that creates a new heaven and a new earth. The more I awaken to the divine, the more God awakens to me. The more I sleepwalk, the less accessibility I am giving to God.
Somehow, I need to shake my own shoulders and shout, “Wake up! See the divine all around! In the babies and the old men who live to a ripe age.” I wonder what life would be like if we were always awake to the divine?