Within our living room early this morning I faced my prayer chair toward the rising sun, and set a timer for thirty minutes for quiet contemplative prayer.
I sat down with my back erect, feet uncrossed on ground, taking a deep breath and hearing the song of the birds outside singing to my soul. These actions center me to become more aware of the presence of the Lord.
After the timer went off, I opened my prayer journal and wrote this: "Dearest Lord, here I am. I hear you calling me closer so you can whisper secrets to my heart. I want to hear you. Speak, dearest Lord, I am listening." (1 Sam 3: 9)
And then I heard, "My child, comfort, comfort my people." (Isaiah 40) Since I know a song with those words I looked it up in my worship hymnal and carefully meditated on the words. I was struck by "comfort those who sit in darkness."
So I asked the question in my journal, "Who do you want me to comfort?" And I understood "all who come upon your path."
With the grace of God, I determined to be mindful of that admonition and asked, "What else do you desire to tell me?"
I understood this: "All that I have given you is gift to give others. Give freely, generously, lavishly, like I do with you. You are my child, called by my name. I send you out to be a light to the people (Matthew 5: 14), to be a star in the darkness (Philippians 2: 15), to tell others of my love and goodness. Listen to my spirit guiding your every footstep."(John 16: 13)
My response written in my journal was: "I surrender to you. Use me for your holy purposes. I am yours!"
I was led to read the words of the song again and felt encouraged to pay attention to what struck me the most in the lyrics. It was "Speak of peace...speak of the peace that awaits them."
And so I say, "Peace be with you this day." And pray...
"O gracious Lord, you who bestow every good and perfect gift so freely, generously and lavishly from above (James 1: 17), we thank you for calling us your children. Give us an abundance of grace and peace to respond to your Word that calls us to comfort others, share our gifts and shine like lights in the world. Open our eyes to see those who are hurting in our midst. Give us wisdom and courage to tell others of your love and goodness. We rejoice that the Spirit of truth guides us to all truth and that he speaks to us what he hears from you. Amen." SM