Recently I changed my centering prayer schedule.
Work has become very challenging. Work has become very busy.
My previous centering prayer schedule consisted of two-twenty minute sits per day. The first sit was as soon as I awoke in the morning.
The second sit was in the mid to late afternoon. If at work, I leave my desk at two or three in the afternoon and head to my car. Sit in the driver’s seat. Roll down the window. Sit for twenty minutes and then return to my work desk.
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I have decided to adjust my centering prayer schedule because work has become more challenging and overwhelming at times. I need God and I to better partner to get me through this busy time.
Here is where flexibility with my sit has come into play.
I still sit first thing in the morning after I awake. This sit is now thirteen minutes.
I now sit two more times in the work day. Instead of one, twenty-minute afternoon sit, I sit twice, thirteen minutes each time. My first sit is before lunch. My second sit is between three and four in the afternoon.
I have discovered that I need two afternoon sits. At the present time my reservoir seems to empty quicker. This means I need less time in between my previous sit, hence the need for a third sit.
I have just started this schedule so I will let you know how it goes. My initial reaction is it has proven quite helpful. It slows me down. It calms me. It allows me to be calmly productive with my daily tasks.
I have learned to trust the nudges and prompts of the Spirit. God has nudged me to adjust my sit schedule. I will remain open to The Spirit and readjust my sit schedule based upon the Sprit’s prompts.
My challenge to you is to do the same. Listen to the Spirit.
Adjust the times and frequencies of your silent sits so they better balance with the ebbs and flows of your life.
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I just finished Presence and Process: A Path Toward Transformative Faith and Inclusive Community by Daniel P. Coleman and The Soul of a Pilgrim: Eight Practices for the Journey Within by Christine Valters Paintner. I am currently reading Intimacy with God: An Introduction To Centering Prayer by Thomas Keating.
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David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings. Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners.
I use a Prayer Rope after each Centering Prayer Sit.
Centering Prayer is a silent prayer practice that can move you toward a profound relationship with the Spirit of God within. It is a way of praying that opens the door to the Divine Indwelling—the ground of our being. With Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating and his colleagues Gail Fitzpatrick-Hopler and Father Carl Arico present the first online course in this method for deepening your intimacy with God and ultimately consenting to the presence and action of the Divine in all aspects of your life.
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Since the time of the Desert Fathers in the third century, Finley begins, Christian mystics have practiced meditation as a way of opening to the direct presence of God in daily life. Legendary seekers such as Saint John of the Cross, Saint Teresa of Avila, and Meister Eckhart explored how meditation can lead us beyond the closed horizon of the ego, to an interior and holy refuge that is always available to us. On Christian Meditation, James Finley offers a gentle introduction to this all-transforming way of life, and the ever-deepening realization of oneness with Christ it leads us to. (Based upon his book, Christian Meditation.)
Check out my review of Christian Prayer Methods by Dr. Philip St. Romain.
Prepare to be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus. Check out Simply Jesus by N. T. Wright. Enjoy an article I wrote about one of the lectures on the Beatitudes.
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