Thursday, August 27, 2015

Praying Is Ontologically Antecedent to McPraying

Ronald McDonald in Bangkok
Can we, while on the run in this crazy busy life, tweet occasional prayers to God? The answer is: Yes.

Is it OK to McPray? Yes.

Is McPraying the kind of thing the Scriptures are talking when it comes to praying? No. 

The answer is no because praying is a relationship, not a duty, and not something we pull out of our hip pocket in an emergency. Biblical praying is pure, which means (acc. to Soren Kierkegaard) it "wills one thing." Jesus-type praying is monocular and single-minded. As Jesus said, "Blessed are the mono-taskers, for they shall see God."

The prayer relationship with God should be like a good marriage. McMarriages are shallow, disconnected, and troubled. So is multi-tasked McSpirituality.

But... didn't Brother Lawrence legitimate praying while doing the dishes? (See his The Practice of the Presence of God.) Yes...   but remember that Brother Lawrence lived in a monastery that had daily, structured times of corporate and monocular praying. Out of much individual and corporate praying flows, inexorably, dish-washing praying. But the latter is not a substitute for the former; the former is ontologically antecedent to the latter. 

No praying person in the Bible or in church history would have concluded that real praying was like a microwave. Real praying is a slow-cooker. Because praying is engagement in relationship with God. All real relationship requires much time, space, and focus.