July 22

Today's quotation:

You pray in your distress and in your need;
would that you might also pray in the fullness
of your joy and in your days of abundance.

Khalil Gibran

Today's Meditation:

Prayer could be the most misunderstood force in our lives.  Many of us use it solely as a refuge in times of trouble, as if we keep it in reserve for when things go bad.  But prayer during the good times can be one of the most important elements of our lives.  Think of it in physical terms--when are we the most effective physically, when we're down and out or when we're feeling very good and things are going well?  When do we have the most strength and endurance?  When are we more able to help others?  Likewise, prayer can be strong and effective when we're at our strongest--yet we neglect prayer at those times because we think of it as something that we have only to pull us out of holes.

But how would our prayers for others feel if they were coming from a place of strength?  How would our prayers for the world feel if we were to pray in our days of plenty?  How much strength could we give our prayers when we feel joyous, exuberant, alive?  How much enthusiasm and love could we put into prayers on the good days?

And is it possible that such prayers might be added to the positive energy of the world, helping the positive to grow in strength?

Prayers in times of distress tend to be for ourselves, or they tend to take on a tone of desperation.  Prayers in times of abundance can help us to contribute to the good and the positive and the uplifting and the encouraging of the world, and such a contribution can be a boon not only to ourselves, but to everyone else.

Questions to consider:

When do you tend to pray most?  Why?

Why do so many people pray only in times of need?

Is prayer a lifejacket for you, or a light that you put out for the world to see?

For further thought:

Prayer is not a stratagem for occasional use, a refuge to resort to now and then.  It is rather like an established residence for the innermost self.  All things have a home:  the bird has a nest, the fox has a hole, the bee has a hive.  A soul without prayer is a soul without a home.

Abraham Joshua Heschel

  

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