Gratefulness, The Heart of Prayer

  • Faith And Beliefs—Trusting Courage by Brother David Steindl-Rast
    From: Gratefulness, The Heart of Prayer Suppose our argument thus far is convincing.  Suppose we agree that gratefulness is that fullness of life for which all of us are thirsting.  Then the task ahead is simple enough: to learn to live gratefully.  The key question is: How shall we go about it? Earlier on, when we spoke of learning to live prayerfully, I suggested that we take the most prayerful moments in our daily life and start from there.  This gives us the advantage of starting with [...]
Newly added

PSALMS: Broader Structures In The Psalter by W. Robert Godfrey

From Learning to Love the Psalms Within the Psalter, certain groups of psalms have long been identified.  Psalms 146–150 are concluding psalms of praise, each beginning and ending with the same Hebrew word: Hallelujah.  Psalms 113–118 have been known as the Egyptian Hallel, the psalms used [...]

Music

  • Wrong Notes In A Splendid Performance by Thomas H. Troeger
    From: Music As Prayer I particularly remember one lesson from years ago, when I was seriously studying the flute.  I was playing for my teacher, John Oberbrunner, a major work that I was about to perform in public.  We had agreed that I was to play the piece all the way through, as I would in the [...]

Healing

Angels

  • At The Dawn Of The Day by Martin Shannon
    From: All God’s Angel After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb.  And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from Heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.  His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white [...]

Wisdom

  • Providence by Nathalie Leone
    From: Christian Stories of Wisdom A priest had shut himself in his cell to write a sermon on divine providence. Suddenly he heard an explosion.  The dam that protected the small town had just given way and the river burst its banks in a roar of flood water that swept along everything in its path. The priest, distraught, was about to give way to [...]

Mysticism

  • Simone Weil—Encounters With Christ
    From Waiting for God and The Notebooks of Simone Weil In 1938 I spent ten days at Solesmes, from Palm Sunday to Easter Tuesday, following all the liturgical services.  I was suffering from splitting headaches; each sound hurt me like a blow; by an extreme effort of concentration I was able to rise above this wretched flesh, to leave it to suffer by itself, heaped up in a corner, and to find a [...]

Earth spirituality

Psalms

Psalm poetry

The Holy Spirit

Mystic poetry

John Donne

  • Wilt Thou Love God? by John Donne
    Wilt thou love God, as he thee? then digest, My Soule, this wholsome meditation, How God the Spirit, by Angels waited on In Heaven, doth make his Temple in thy brest. The Father having begot a Sonne most blest, And still begetting, (for he ne’r begonne) Hath [...]

Geoffrey Hill

  • In Memory Of Jane Fraser by Geoffrey Hill
    When snow like sheep lay in the fold And winds went begging at each door, And the far hills were blue with cold, And a cold shroud lay on the moor, She kept the siege. And every day We watched her brooking over death Like a strong bird above its prey. The room filled with the kettle’s breath. [...]

Kathleen Norris

  • A Prayer To Eve by Kathleen Norris
    Mother of fictions and of irony, help us to laugh. Mother of science and the critical method, keep up humble. Muse of listeners, hope of interpreters, inspire us to act. Bless our metaphors, that we might eat them. Help us to know, Eve, the one thing we must do. Come with us, muse of exile, mother [...]

Spiritual formation

  • The Limited Use Of Intelligence, by Jean-Pierre de Caussade
    From The Joy of Full Surrender The mind with all its powers would like to hold first place among all the instruments employed by God, but it must, like a dangerous slave, be reduced to the lowest place.  It might be of great service if made use of in a right manner, but it can do much injury if it is not kept in subjection.  When the soul longs for outward supports, grace whispers to the heart that God’s invisible work is enough.  When the soul wishes to forego created means of help at the [...]
  • Resting In The Current (Surrender) by Gary L. Thomas
    From: The Glorious Pursuit The Man who wishes to offer a pure mind to God but who is troubled by cares is like a man who expects to walk quickly even though his legs are tied together. (John Climacus) Lisa and I wanted to move back to Washington State to be close to our children’s grandparents, but the situation looked bleak.  When we discussed our options with a realtor, his scenario stunned us.  “Best case scenario is that you’d have to bring $10,000 to [...]

Spirituality

Prayers of indigenous peoples

  • Prayer Of Confession, 19th Century India
    Like the bounding stag I have sought sensual pleasures and fallen into the lake. I am the greatest sinner among sinners, unwilling to part with even a grain of rice to the noisy crow. Like the fly buzzing about without any rest, I seek. O, Father, tell me what to do that I may not die without your grace, and grant me your grace to support me. Like the bull bearing heavy burdens, I have toiled carrying the load of my own grief. Not knowing anything, I have roamed like the unclean animal feeding [...]

Psalm 145

I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.

2 Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.

3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.

4 One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.

5 I will speak of the glorious honor of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.

6 And men shall speak of the might of thy terrible acts: and I will declare thy greatness.

7 They shall abundantly utter the memory of thy great goodness, and shall sing of thy righteousness.

8 The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.

9 The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.

10 All thy works shall praise thee, O Lord; and thy saints shall bless thee.

11 They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power;

12 To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of his kingdom.

13 Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.

14 The Lord upholdeth all that fall, and raiseth up all those that be bowed down.

15 The eyes of all wait upon thee; and thou givest them their meat in due season.

16 Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing.

17 The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works.

18 The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.

19 He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.

20 The Lord preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.

21 My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord: and let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever.

A Quote From Thomas Merton

I have no desire to be a reformer, I do not really mean to enlist the whole world in the pursuit of a contemplation that can only be the gift of God.