Friday, March 2, 2007

Archbishop Anthony Bloom, School for Prayer (1970)

This is part of my spiritual growth reading. I’ve read about half – in snippets of several pages. Anthony Bloom speaks as someone who prays. and his words awaken in me a longing to pray with my whole being and in every moment. prayer has been something that i have cared about for years, but i, like many others, struggle with prayer being just another interest instead of a way of living. and even with the daily prayers that i often join in with the community, i don’t participate fully – so often my mind wanders. i hope i may i have the grace to dwell with this book so i might also be one who prays.

closer to the finish: the best part is the realistic-ness of it. and the wonderful delight that God accepts and delights in as much as we are able to give. and yet even in the midst of all of our efforts, he expects us to be fully ourselves and come to Him delighting in Him.
several examples that stick with me –
concerning his words of advice about praying shorter prayers or through Scripture. we are not to choose something too difficult with the hope of repeating in the midst of our tasks all day for we will give it up after less than half an hour, but instead we are to choose something more manageable – and try it only for half an hour at first – and perhaps switch to something new for another short while later in the day.
his words of advice to an older woman who desperately desired to pray – and spent hours intensely trying to do so and had consulted many others to help her: he told her to stop trying so hard to pray but just to spend time knitting with God and noticing where she was. this, of course, seemed the opposite of what she had been trying to do but she did it nonetheless – and discovered that in the absence of her trying so hard to meet God that God was present in the world she had missed around her.

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