Prayer – a varied landscape

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Our lovely Bernese Mountain Dog has something wrong with her paw!  It’s nothing serious but she is limping a little, and daily walks are confined to half-hour jaunts right now.  But even in her present difficulties, we can open our front door and explore surprisingly varied countryside for 30 minutes.  Our circuit covers cobbled pavements (not ideal for sore paws!), peaceful wooded areas with soft undergrowth, a steep tarmac-ed path near a very loud motorway and then open fields. So, we experience a variety of mini- landscapes within a short distance of where we live.

On our walk through the woods today, I started to make connections between these shortened dog-walks and my prayer-life over the past *** years. I realised that prayer could be described as a varied landscape too, in some ways.  So many different ways of praying or being with God.  And times when it is smooth easy-going, and times which feel distinctly bumpy or arid. 

One of the many possible ways of “categorising” prayer is to make a distinction between silence and sound.   Particularly, the sound of the human voice. I am someone who often enjoys silent meditation.  But there are times in life, when I am tempted to use the silence to turn inwards and to dwell on the difficult things around me, I actually need words, specifically other people’s words.  And I have benefited hugely from daily prayer apps such the one produced by the Church of England (“Daily Prayer”).  I’ve been lifted out of myself and oriented towards God by participating in the creative blending of spoken Scripture, corporate prayer and music.

Perhaps you are “the other way around” at the moment.  Life is very busy – there is a lot of noise of different kinds and you don’t want more spoken words or sound, particularly.  You would love the chance to spend extended time with God in silence. 

If this is you, why not join us on our summer retreat this year?

It’s from Thursday 25 August 2022 at 19h00

to Sunday 28 August 2022 at around 16h00

at the Centre Spirituel Ignatien La Pairelle

25, rue Marcel Lecompte

5100 Wepion (Namur)

The retreat, which is open to all Christians in Belgium aged 18+, offers space to spend a long week-end with God using the theme “walking by the river”. It will largely be in silence (with input/suggestions for guided prayer from the leaders – Sonja, Ann and myself).

If you’d like more information, go to the Events page and choose Future Events.

Maybe see you there?


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