Tag Archives: in the beginning

In the Beginning? Center on The Word.

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Wednesday, September 30, 2015

WORD John 1-1

In the Beginning? Center on The Word.

The last day of September. My last day of Centering Prayer. My word of the day, my Name of God for today is Word. (As in, “The Word,” from the Gospel of John, chapter 1.)

I have always been strongly, deeply moved by this Name of God. (Or, preincarnate Name of the Son.) As I focused on The Word, John 1:1 kept running through my head.” In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

Surprisingly, I didn’t find myself focusing on the Logos, on the Greek word for The Word. Instead, I found myself centering on “the beginning” and then on before the beginning. What came before the beginning? What was here? (Or, there? Or, anywhere?)

I know, God was present before anything was created. And, I tend to gravitate towards images and imagery as well as sound. I thought of The Word being a spoken Word. And then, since I was contemplating “the beginning,” lo and behold! C.S. Lewis’s book The Magician’s Nephew popped into my head again, and the spoken Word morphed into Aslan singing the world containing Narnia into being!

How marvelous, actually seeing (in my mind’s eye, that is) the Creator of the heavens and the earth at work, creating the wonders and the glory of the worlds, and the solar systems, and the galaxies. Awe-inspiring does not even touch this.

And, that was what I centered on, today.

However, I am torn about finishing my month of Centering Prayer. Yes, relieved, since praying in this meditative way every day for a month was a huge stretch for me! (I am afraid I am not very good at this meditative style of prayer.) But, also partly unfulfilled. Or something. I am afraid I did not center or focus very well this month, at all. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being awful and 10 being stellar, I have the definite sense that I didn’t get much above a 3 on most days in September.

God, I’m sorry. I know You understand, but I’m still sorry. At least I was faithful, and I earnestly tried. I really did. And, thank You, Lord, for loving me anyhow, and listening to me as I pray. No matter what method I use or how I come before You.

@chaplaineliza

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Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

Center on “In the Beginning, God”

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Friday, September 11, 2015

GOD in the beginning, God - grey

Center on “In the Beginning, God”

Let’s start at the very beginning—a very good place to start. The first chapter of Genesis. The first verse. “In the beginning, God—“

I’m choosing a Name of God found in the Bible, my word of the day. My Name of God for today is God. Elohim, one of the Hebrew words for God or Lord.

I departed from my usual habit of simply meditating and centering in prayer of that Name of God, and looking up the verse afterwards. No, I was curious as to exactly what was going on with this Name of God. So, I checked out several different translations of Genesis 1:1, as well as several different commentaries.

Specifically trying not to get too much information in my head, I earnestly tried to limit my reading to only the first verse in Genesis 1. And, even that might be construed as too much. (For Centering Prayer, anyway.) I refreshed my memory concerning this Hebrew word. A noun in the plural, I had forgotten that Elohim/God takes singular verbs. (Such as “my God IS” instead of “my Gods ARE.”)

Again, I tried not to get too hung up on the words. I was able to mostly pray and meditate on the Person and Name of God, as found in Genesis 1. Yes, in my mind I saw a windswept plain, huge in size, shape and loneliness. Elohim was over the earth, and created—brought form into the planet.

Suddenly, Aslan the Lion sprang into my mind, singing Narnia into being. (A narrative representation of the beginning of Genesis, thanks to C.S. Lewis and his book The Magician’s Nephew.) I liked this image! (This is one of my favorite books in the Chronicles of Narnia, too!)

I felt comforted, held by loving hands (paws?) as I watched everything being created. I knew it might be difficult thing for others, though. However, this centering prayer time was set aside for me. For my personal use and encouragement.

Thank You, God! Thanks for this wonderful source of encouragement and strength.

@chaplaineliza

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Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

O Word of God, Incarnate!

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, July 30, 2015

in the beginning was the Word - John 1

O Word of God, Incarnate

I have always been drawn to the mystery of John 1. The Prolegomena, the opening words of the Gospel of John, echo and re-echo in my head. Yes, I am learning more about the Word. The Word made flesh. And, there are always more layers.

Here are the two verses, as adapted from John 1 for the book Praying the New Testament as Psalms: “In the beginning was the Word/and the Word was with God./and the Word was God.” [1]

The second verse takes off from the point where I was awed by the first , , ,

“’And the Word became flesh and lived among us./May I proclaim what I have seen and heard/concerning the Word of life.” [2]

In the beginning. (!!!!!) Re-echoing Genesis 1. And, the Word of God. The Word was—and is—beyond words, beyond reality, and beyond time itself. (My poor, paltry excuse for explanatory words.) I could go into the blessed reality of the Incarnation, about how much God SO Loved the World, and each individual therein. But—I think that simple, profound statement is sufficient.

God, thank You for sending Your Son, the Word made flesh. I bow to the ground as I think of how earth-shattering that idea was. And still is Thank You, God!

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er .

[1] Praying the New Testament as Psalms, Desmond O’Donnell, OMI, and Maureen Mohen, RSM, (United States of America: ACTA Publications, 2002.), 208.

[2] Ibid.