Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Solitude and Prayer (Prayer Summer)

Today I'm going to spend 4-6 hours alone with God. This has been my is my habit, on Tuesdays, for the past 36 years. I'll be praying today.

This is a "work day" for me as a pastor and Jesus-follower. My true work is to meet with God and to be met by God. I need God. And if there is anyone who needs me, it can only be because of Christ in me.

I need help from God today. I need God's assistance every day. I need God to pour himself into me so that Christ can be formed in me. There are things I struggle with and encounter that I cannot solve or heal in my own strength and intelligence. I have seen that my strength and intelligence is not even a '1' on a scale of '10' in terms of and in relation to what God desires to work in and through me.

What I need is the Living God, not some theological abstraction. I need God in my life relationally, not as some religious experience or thing. I need God as my Shepherd, not advice on self-shepherding or another book on prayer.

Thomas Merton has written:

"I am here in solitude for one thing: to be open, to not be "closed in" on any one choice to the exclusion of all others: to be open to God's will and freedom, to His love, which comes to save me from all in myself that resists Him and says no to Him. This I must do not to justify myself, not to be right, not to be good, but because the whole world of lost people needs this opening by which salvation can get into it through me." (A Year With Thomas Merton, June 12)

Here are some things I have written on Solitude: