Jesus was always praying.
Every so often, He would suddenly come out with something like
“Thank-You Father!” or “Praise you Father!” –
and even when He was on that hateful cross,
He was still praying – just odd phrases
that He could squeeze out through the agony…
Not a pleasant memory, that one…
But it was who He was.
He didn’t only pray at set times in set places – although He did do that –
no, He seemed to have this running conversation going on
between Himself and the Father all the time.
He would take Himself off for times of special prayer –
but even if He was helping to carry the water home –
and chatting with you – you knew that somewhere deep inside,
He was talking – and listening to God.
That’s why – every now and again – words would just burst out of Him.
It’s a kind of prayer I found that I could do –
well, once I’d got used to it –
and I never got to the stage of feeling very comfortable
about saying things out loud – though I know some people do.
But, I got into the habit of saying a quick phrase at odd moments –
and it soon became automatic.
It might be as simple as remembering to say “Thank-you Father”
when something good came along – or
“Help Lord” when something hard came along.
I sometimes used some of Jesus’ words – like “I am your Way” –
“Don’t be afraid” – “You in Me and I in you” “Come to Me” –
and it felt as if He was there speaking to me.
Or I’d think of words that went with a job –
like drawing water “Living Water refresh me” – or
lighting the lamps “Light of the world – let Your Light shine in me” –
pruning the vines “Lord of the Vineyard – make me fruitful
All sorts of one-line prayers –
all of them reminding me that you can pray all the time –
even when you don’t have time!
Drinking from the Wellspring
The idea of frequent short prayers – or aspirations – has a long tradition in Christianity. Celtic Christians had a prayer for everything – going out – and coming in – lighting the fire – extinguishing the fire…everything they did during the day had a prayer that went with it. Try some of the phrases that “Martha” suggested – and try some of your own. It may feel strange at first – but persevere -and try to develop the habit of sending little darts of love and prayer through to God during the course of the day.
© 200X Wellspring
[This is one of a series of nine posts using one’s imagination to get inside a biblical character to make him or her come alive for listeners or readers. Parts 5 and 6 will be posted next week.]
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