WHY DO SO MANY praying Christians feel as if their prayers “die at the ceiling” or echo in the dark? Perhaps something crucial is missing.
I suggest that what’s missing is the sense and the experience of deep connection and real community: of spiritual intimacy not only with God but with other praying believers. Believing and praying others, members of our spiritual family who gather with us around Word, Table, Bath, [baptism] and Hours, are a gift of God to absorb the echo of isolated orisons. Believing, praying others help us hoist before God the concerns that are too heavy for any one of us alone to lift “past the ceiling.”
I believe God has placed it in our hearts to pray together: to meet in some place and time, to give ourselves to some form or fashion, to pray both with and for one another. When we don’t pray like that, or do so only rarely, we sense the loss even if we cannot articulate it—as when we hunger for something we cannot name.
– Thomas R. Steaglad
A House of Prayer
From page 16 of A House of Prayer: The Power of Praying in Community by Thomas R. Steagald. Copyright © 2014 by Thomas R. Steaglad. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.
Do you pray regularly with others? Share your thoughts.
For we do not proclaim ourselves; we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your slaves for Jesus’ sake.
2 Corinthians 4:5, NRSV
This Week: Pray for those single mothers and fathers. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.
Did You Know?
In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.
This week we remember: Margaret Gaffney Haughery (February 9).
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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