Year C: 30th Sunday in Ordinary time.
Here, I am trying something new for this blog. Towards the end of Exploring Personal Prayer at Our Lady of the Annunciation in Poringland, one of the participants commented that they might find it difficult to do this kind of prayer without being guided through it as they had been during the programme. Since the main purpose of me setting up the blog in the first place is to provide support for those making this journey, and since I have recently been including audio files of me reading my blog posts, it seems that the logical thing to do is to provide the kind of support I am trying out here. I have also been inspired by Pray as You Go, which I use for my own morning prayer, and The Wednesday Word, which is given out in my parish every Sunday. It is not my intention to duplicate what either of these sites are doing, merely to draw from the forthcoming Sunday liturgy and to offer a guided prayer on one of the pieces of scripture in the same way that we have been doing in Exploring Personal Prayer. Neither do I intend to offer any reflections on the scripture. My suggestion is that you follow the Ignatian structure: preparation for prayer by reading the scripture, going to your prayer place and doing the prayer itself, and then moving away to another place and doing a review of the prayer. Keeping some sort of prayer journal is good practice. Note any moments of consolation in the prayer, where you felt drawn more deeply into God, and moments of desolation, where prayer was disturbed, where you were distracted and pulled further away from God: feelings of attraction and repulsion should be noted. These points may provide areas for repetition of the prayer. Also, if you have a spiritual director or prayer partner, someone who can listen with an ear to where God is in this, it may be worth sharing your prayer with them. I am following the processes outline in the prayer cards above. You may print these onto A6 or A4 card to have in your prayer space to help you become accustomed to this way of praying, remembering it is more of a flow than a rigid structure.
From Psalm 34:
This poor soul cried, and was heard by the Lord
I will bless the Lord at all times;
his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
let the humble hear and be glad.
3 O magnify the Lord with me,
and let us exalt his name together.
The face of the Lord is against evildoers,
to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
17 When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears,
and rescues them from all their troubles.
18 The Lord is near to the broken-hearted,
and saves the crushed in spirit.
22 The Lord redeems the life of his servants;
none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.
If you have found this post helpful, please leave feedback so that I will know to continue in this direction. I will reschedule the “Diary of a Sunflower” posts for Friday.
Background music is the album: Keith Halligan – Lifestyle Meditation, Global Journey