Devotional Thought of the Day:
6 “I will also bless the foreigners who commit themselves to the LORD, who serve him and love his name, who worship him and do not desecrate the Sabbath day of rest, and who hold fast to my covenant. 7 I will bring them to my holy mountain of Jerusalem and will fill them with joy in my house of prayer. I will accept their burnt offerings and sacrifices, because my Temple will be called a house of prayer for all nations. Isaiah 56:6-7 (NLT)
464 Look at the set of senseless reasons the enemy gives you for abandoning your prayer. “I have no time”—when you are continually wasting it. “This is not for me.” “My heart is dry… “ Prayer is not a question of what you say or feel, but of love. And you love when you try hard to say something to the Lord, even though you might not actually say anything. (1)
It was just a comment by a friend this morning, that came back to mind as I was doing my devotions. Basically, the comment on FB was something to the extent of, “I am so looking forward to pancakes this morning” (there was something about gluten-free there… but that seems like an oxymoron) The comment took me back to my youth, to the breakfasts at Downeast Coffee Shop in Salem with my dad (you know the kind of place with the grill opposite the counter where you sat?), the breakfasts with my gramps at the racetrack.
Heck – even though I liked sleep a lot in those days… we would be up before dawn if it meant a good breakfast, incredibly anticipating the bacon, eggs, pancakes, and the fun of going out with grampy or dad.
Which got me thinking – do we desire to have time with out heavenly father like that? Are we willing to get up earlier, to spend time with Him, Do we long for our time of prayer? The way Isaiah describes is, how could we not? Those of us who were outsiders, are now accepted. The sacrifice of Christ for us is accepted. We are made part of God’s family, and He longs to spend time with us. Conversing, feasting, laughing, enjoying each other! That is what prayer is, even in Church. As Josemaria Escriva pronounced, this is not about whether you have just the right words, or have the correct mental attitude. It is about the love, the relationship, the time together.
I can’t remember the topics my dad and I discussed at the coffee shop. But I can picture us there on the stools, me spinning around, him just enjoying his coffee. My brother Stephen enjoying a horrid mixture of half coffee half cream. I can remember the booth at the racetrack. The conversation there was always about the Red Sox, about whether Yaz was better than Williams, about the being the year of the World Series… I remember us together, I see it still as if I was still 10.
That’s the nature of prayer, the time knowing not only are we in God’s presence, but that we have His attention, His love. Some of the things we say are probably quiet silly in other people’s eyes. The problems we bring to Him, the burdens that are lifted… the fun, the joy, the communion.
This is prayer, so act like a 10 year old kid talking to his dad over pancakes…. and as often as you get a chance, partake of the Bread of Heaven with Him as well!
(1) Escriva, Josemaria (2011-01-31). Furrow (Kindle Locations 2047-2051). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.