PRAYER AND MEDITATION

We have mentioned prayer as an active way for people to engage in the Cloud connection. The words “prayer and “meditation” are often used in a variety of ways. They are both vital parts of the Christian spiritual life and we must be careful not to be confused by the non-Biblical ways they are used. Perhaps we should start by saying that prayer should not be reduced to meditation, contemplation, thinking, imagining, feeling, action or work, silence, communion with nature, ecstatic or transcendental experience, although it does include some of these things. Nor is prayer union with the “ALL”, ritual or magic.
Prayer cannot be done or understood scientifically (mathematically). Prayer is not natural in the sense that it is not limited to the space and time parts of reality. It is not natural to people in the sense that it cannot be reduced to an evolved function of self-preservation or for the passing on of our genes. It is given by God as part of our full spiritual life. Prayer is personal in that it is a communication between one person and another person. (Personal does not mean a consciousness that is aware of itself. Personal means self-aware consciousness in relationship with other self-aware consciousness.)
Prayer is language – direct, definite and committed. If we read some of the prayers recorded in the Bible (e.g. I Kings 8, Col. 1:9-12, Eph. 1:15-29, Phil. 1:9-11), we find that God’s people speak to Him in ordinary language about both this space and time existence and about the supernatural and eternity – the total reality in which we live our spiritual lives. God speaks to us through His Word (and His creation). We can speak to Him through our words about His Word and how it applies to our lives. We should take courage to pray and have communication with God, confessing our failure to make prayer the pervasive center of our lives. We can be truly centered in God and His reality by going beyond the center of ourselves and into the communicative relationship of prayer.
Ellis H. Poerter

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