Saturday, May 03, 2014

Contemplative Prayer Is Revelatory of the Being of God (PrayerLife)

Worship at Redeemer
In the history of Christian spirituality meditation is distinguished from contemplation. Meditation is ruminating on the thoughts and truths of God; contemplation concerns the visio dei, the beholding of God. In contemplation there is a God-encounter. Meditation can bring revelation, contemplation is revelation.

Henri Nouwen writes:

"The practice of contemplative prayer is the discipline by which we begin to see God in our heart... God speaks to God, Spirit speaks to Spirit, heart speaks to heart. Contemplation, therefore, is a participation in this divine self-recognition." (Nouwen, The Only Necessary Thing: Living a Prayerful Life, 35)

This is the language of trinitarian theism, and John 14-15-16-17. This is Jesus' prayer that we would be one as he and the Father are one. 

Meditation can escort us into God's presence; contemplation is intimate, abiding God-connectedness. 

Jesus invites us into the Big Dance of Father-Son-Spirit. We fellowship with God and are empowered within the perichoretic union.

Contemplative prayer is revelatory of the being of God. I have experienced this, many times over the past four decades.

Go to pray, seeking God. Do this as a lifestyle. Have much time for this. He will reveal himself to you.