Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Delight – Entering God's Heart Through Prayer

The Way of a Pilgrim is a 19th century Russian work telling the story of the narrator’s pilgrimage across Russia pursuing wisdom in the way of prayer. In particular he is concerned to learn to pray without ceasing in communion with God. The focus is on the Jesus Prayer, the ancient Eastern Christian practice of continuous prayer: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.” It is an instructive account of the challenge of praying deeply and truly.

After much practice, the Pilgrim has this experience:

The prayer of my heart gave me such consolation that I felt there was no happier person on earth than I, and I doubted if there was a greater or fuller happiness in the Kingdom of Heaven. Not only did I feel this in my own soul, but the whole outside world also seemed to be full of beauty and delight. Everything drew me to love and to thank God; people, trees, plants, animals. I saw them all as my kinfolk. I found on them all the magic of the Name of Jesus. 
The Way of a Pilgrim

While we trust that God desires for us to bring all our concerns to him in prayer, all true prayer is rooted in the practice of sinking our hearts into the Heart of God where we are transformed and begin to see other people and everything in the world with the love of God – full of beauty and delight.

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