Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Prayer of the Teacup
So many friends are going through difficult times right now. I get overwhelmed when I sit down to pray for all the needs on my heart. Sometimes I just don't have adequate words to express the depth of my concern, the angst I feel for them, the desires for God to meet them in the midst of their sufferings. Then I read this today and knew I was on the right track.
"I remember Charles saying that he hardly knew how to pray for himself, much less anyone else. 'So I just say their names,' he said, 'and sort of picture them in the last place I saw them. Then I am quiet for as long as I can be, just sort of lifting them up in my mind, looking at their face, trying to see what it holds. And for a while it seems that I am carrying a part of whatever they are having to carry.' To the Father, on that last night with His friends, Jesus said, 'I lift up to You those You have given me.' To lift up those who have been given to us, and to whom we have been give, is all, and possibly everything, that we can do.'Father Almighty,' we pray, 'we offer prayers to You for those whose lives are linked to our.' And there they are, in those places where they were the last time we was them. We can see the way their hair curls around their ears just so, and the twinkle in their eyes, and the hint of something unnamed that hides in the edges and folds of their smiles. We have been given to them and they to us, by virtue of blood and gene pool or by virtue of relationship and covenant. We are not alone, and neither are they, no matter how lonely we seem, all of us and any of us, at times.
We entrust all who are dear to us to Your never-failing love and care, for this life and the life to come, knowing that You will do for them far more than we can desire or pray for. Kyrie, eleison - Lord, have mercy."
Living Prayer, Robert Benson
This reminded me of something else I read a while ago: Prayer of the Teacup
("The first 15 minutes of each day I reserve for the saints on earth. I begin my day with a cup of tea. As the steam from my cup ascends to the heavens I walk with all my favorite strangers into the heart of God. There is a bit of the stranger in everyone, even friends. This dawn prayer becomes a sacred moment of yearning. I yearn for God to bless my friends and name them one by one. Sometimes I do not even name them. I simply see their faces in the ascending steam. I receive the persons who come into my memory and I give them back to God.")
I stand at my window and watch
one by one the stars all leave me
I am having tea with the dawn
the first ray of sun descending
into my teacup
into my heart
The steam of my tea ascending
to the heavens
into God's heart
The yearning in my heart streaming
to the heavens
into God's heart
And God, standing in the heavens
watching the sun rise in my heart
leans down to breathe in
the first rays of my yearning
and names it morning prayer.
Seasons of Your Heart
from my journal:
Sometimes word are not enough to express the prayers in my heart and mind - silence say it best - allowing my spirit to communicate with God without words getting in the way. Sometimes silence with God feels empty like nothing is being communicated when in truth so much more is being "said" than when I use my words. Thank You Papa for this special way to pray.