Contemplative prayer is the day-to-day, practical application of all of the above. It’s a way to give yourself to God, let God open the “eyes” of your heart, so you even more begin to “see” the universal Christ and his life, death, resurrection in all things and all people.
Ten years ago, I was a pastor in New Jersey when I first formally studied contemplation. I found I’d been praying “contemplatively” for a long time. The Holy Spirit had been teaching me contemplative prayer all along, through various people and churches and also through my own intuition and the Spirit’s inner urgings.
So, this is not some elite activity, accessible only to childless monks and nuns cloistered and isolated from the real world. Like the very body and blood of Christ, it is for you.
There are many contemplative ways to pray. At its heart is silence and stillness, whether you’re listening to your breath, prayer-journaling, or meditating with scripture.
I’m excited to practice it with you in February and March, as we read together Richard Rohr’s The Universal Christ. Likely you’ll find you’ve also been praying this way without knowing it.
I hope all of us will find God opening the eyes of our heart even wider to behold this beloved and Christ-soaked world.
Saint Paul Lutheran Church
715 South Third Street
Clinton, IA 52732
(at the foot of the south bridge)