"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Posture of Dependence

I have read many times about the "posture" of prayer. I know many people who are very moved by taking a specific posture when praying... kneeling, face-down, and hands raised, for example. I have never really been particularly affected by a specific posture when praying, although I have tried a variety of suggested options and do appreciate the concept. But, just today, when speaking with a friend, I realized that the simple act of sitting down alone is a posture that requires surrender and is in-and-of-itself an act of dependence and prayer in my life. Let me explain.

Apart from my morning quiet times, I have been attempting (or floundering) to sit down twice a day for a moment of prayer, mediation, and adoration. In my desire to incorporate contemplation and quiet moments throughout my day, I have set an alarm on my cell phone to help remind me... to "call" me to prayer twice a day. I can't say I am always very obedient to that alarm clock. It is amazing how quickly a moment gets away from me and before I know it the day has gone with business!

That said, the days where I have made the effort to stop whatever I am doing and sit down, (..."put my rear-end into a chair and purposefully adore Jesus and worship"---is my mantra), ...those days have been very sweet. When I choose to stop the activity completely and just attempt to sit in His Presence, under His word and worship ...wow, what that has done for my heart, my life, the rest of my day!

I am realizing that I can learn to pray throughout my day, running here and running there. And, that is really good. It is a sweet discipline to learn to pray while folding laundry, teaching school, or driving the car. But, for me the act, ...the very act of surrender that comes with stopping (just stopping) and sitting down is trust and worship. When I choose to stop and sit down twice a day, just for a few slight moments, I am choosing to worship and adore God. And, I am trusting my Father. And, I am saying He is more important. ...more important than anything.

Yesterday, the alarm went off when I was stirring a pot of soup and making a shepherd's pie... all I would have had to do was choose to turn off the gas stove for 5 minutes and go sit down. I didn't. I missed that stolen moment with Him.

How does this work on those days when the running from here-to-there is intense? How does it work when guests are here? When I am out-and-about? I am not sure. But, I want to learn. ...maybe the toilet is the answer! Who will question my sitting an extra 3 minutes on the toilet--- they wouldn't guess I was adoring Him in there, would they?

In Mark 1, Jesus just snuck away... got up when they were all still sleeping and snuck away! They had to go hunting for him. I love that picture. Couldn't I just sneak away to the toilet?? And, they could come looking for me?

I do know that my busy life and it's many cares can take away these moments that Jesus offers me. Can I just sit down for a few minutes? ...a few minutes a day, could I take the "posture" of prayer and worship Him with my body as well as my soul. Not as another "to do" or guilt-thing, but as an act of love, dependence, and relationship.
O Father, teach me to pray!

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