The only thing to remember about prayer is to begin where you are. (Thomas Merton)

Deep down in me I knowed it was a lie, and He knowed it. You can't pray a lie - I found that out. (Mark Twain)

If governments knew how subversive contemplative prayer is, they would ban it. (Desmond Tutu)

Pray as you can, not as you can't. (Father Ted King, Dean Emeritus of Cape Town)

So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray. (Mary Oliver)

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

All sufficient


I want to share with you a few verses from Genesis, chapter 49:
22 Joseph is a fruitful vine,
a fruitful vine near a spring,
whose branches climb over a wall.

23 With bitterness archers attacked him;
they shot at him with hostility.

24 But his bow remained steady,
his strong arms stayed limber,
because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob,
because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel,

25 because of your father's God, who helps you,
because of the Almighty, who blesses you
with blessings of the heavens above,
blessings of the deep that lies below,
blessings of the breast and womb.
Perhaps you have heard the Hebrew words "El Shaddai" before -- maybe because of the Amy Grant song by that title. The usual translation is "Almighty God" but "shaddai" also means "all sufficient" and it is from a root that means "breast". God nurtures us as a mother nurtures her newborn.

One of my favorite Psalms is Psalm 131 which contains these words:
But I still my soul and make it quiet
Like a child on its mother's breast.
My soul is quieted within me.
Let us rest on the breast of God. Let us be nurtured by the breast of God.
~~~

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