Centering prayer and lectio divina – Wed. May 20 at 1:00 pm
Centering prayer only – Thurs. May 21 at 9:30 pm
Centering prayer and lectio divina – Fri. May22 at 4:00 pm
Though I have been reading the Daily Contemplative Prayer book every morning for more than 10 years now, I was so struck by the message this morning. It was about how our “practice” brings about in us the dismantling of the emotional programs that we create for ourselves. We create a whole array of behaviors in order to get security, power and control, love and esteem from other people and other “gods,” and our “practice” enables us GRADUALLY to find all those needs in God. We abide in a paradoxical dimension where we must die to our false self (the self with all these emotional programs and behaviors) and be GRAUALLY “born again” to a life in Christ where all those needs are met, a true fullness of LIFE. All this is basic, foundational understanding about what we are doing together in Praying the Scriptures. But what struck me so this morning was how Thomas Keating describes the “product” of our practice. He says, “The fruit of this purifying process is the freedom to decide what to do, without interference from the compulsions and fixations of the false self.” He notes how when we are under the power of the false self with its emotional programs, we are constantly frustrated and our afflictive emotions are set off: anger, grief, fear, pride, lust, greed, jealousy etc. But as the false self diminishes (through contemplation, beholding) our trust in God increases and we find peace, rest and energy to put to better purposes than satisfying our false self programs for happiness.
(JUST DO IT…..like mother used to tell us, “you will be glad you did.”)
Colossians 3:5, 9-10,12 NIV “Put to death…you old self with its practices and …put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator….Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Dig deep into this passage. It is well worth your time.
The PEACE and REST of CHRIST is with you!