Tag Archives: meditate and pray

Meet Christ in the Word

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Bible, drawing

Meet Christ in the Word

How to meditate, and why? Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote several recommendations for the Finkenwalde seminarians on how to meditate.

As I have said before, Bonhoeffer was adept at meditation and prayer. What an instructor to have for spiritual direction. He suggests that people ought to rise up from meditation “in a different state from when we sat down. We want to meet Christ in His Word.” [1]

Bonhoeffer had such a high view of scripture. Scripture was where he came to receive what God would like to give to him. Through reading the Bible on a regular basis, each day he gathered information and understanding from God’s Word.

He suggested meeting the Lord each day in the morning. Truthfully, this is difficult for me. I am not a “morning person.” Perhaps, someone of Bonhoeffer’s insight was excited to meet God as early as possible. One of his recommendations is to “lay upon Him everything that preoccupies you and weighs you down, before new burdens are laid upon you.” [2]

This is similar to one of the recommendations of the Twelve Steps, to reflect upon one’s day at day’s end and to set up a virtual ledger, weighing good deeds and bad, and then leaving things with God. (Or, the Higher Power.) As someone with a certificate in Alcohol and Drug Counseling, I have spoken with alcoholics, addicts and their loved ones about the wisdom of making mental accounts. Every day we do at least one thing “right” or pleasing in God’s eyes. That is to be celebrated.

“His fellowship, his help, his guidance for the day through his Word—that is the goal.” [3] What an insight into how to meditate! God willing, I might be able to do the same thing.



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[1] Meditating on the Word, Dietrich Bonhöffer, edited by David McI. Gracie. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Cowley Publications, 2000), 24.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

God Our Bridegroom. Centering, Day Three.

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Tuesday, September 1, 2015


God Our Bridegroom. Centering, Day Three.

For each day in the month of September, I will choose a name of God found in the Bible. I’m using that for my word of the day. My word—Name of God for today is Bridegroom.

This Name of God gave me pause. I almost did not use it for my centering word today. However, I ended up doing so. Interesting experience, to be sure.

I had little difficulty quieting my body, and only a bit of difficulty quieting my mind for Centering Prayer. I found myself somewhat receptive, to begin with.

However—the first of the mental pictures that came to my mind was that of a huge Jesus. Sort of like a gigantic Lord and Savior. I saw Him dressed in the typical manner in which Jesuses are almost always dressed (in Sunday school pictures, at least). The location in my mind seemed to be a generic city center. A large square, or park area, filled with people; hundreds of thousands, at least. And, the huge Jesus, right smack in the middle of everything. (That made me hesitate.)

I felt at a distance. Particularly distant from Jesus. And, I did not like that.

Returning to thinking about Bridegroom, what came into my mind next was a wedding ceremony uncannily like a photo I had seen years ago of Sun Myung Moon, blessing thousands of couples in Madison Square Garden. This thought was extremely distasteful! I remember actually shaking my head to get the thought out of it.

Then, I specifically oriented my mind toward Middle Eastern marriage customs. From what I understand, the marriage between bride and bridegroom is not only a joining of two people. It’s more than that. It’s a joining together of two families. An alliance. My mind went one step further. I thought of the family of Jesus (or, God) joined with the family of humans. That idea drew me in, and I thought about the loving alliance all of us, as the Church, have with Jesus. Our Bridegroom. As I said, interesting experience.

I noted at the beginning of this post that I was hesitant to meditate and pray with this Name of God. I have never felt particularly close to this image. However, I knew immediately that I ought to try. Try to pray, and see what happens.

Lord Jesus, it was an interesting experience, and one part more than a little disturbing. (I mean, the part about Moon and the blessing ceremony, and comparing You to that.) I thank You for aiding me in this effort today, and helping to give me a positive experience and impression. Thanks, Lord.


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