Tag Archives: not-knowing

Pierce the Cloud of My Unknowing

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Saturday, October 3, 2015

birds, moonrise, water - credit bellofcompassion.org

Pierce the Cloud of My Unknowing

Such an arresting image. I am still struggling to get my head around that image. God’s love, piercing the cloud of my unknowing.

This piece of the Lord’s Prayer has the word “Affirmation” as its focus. The prayer I chose for today from The Oxford Book of Prayer deals with “Who art in heaven (Prayer 14, page 56) [1]

Another thing I’m wondering about. “Affirmation?” Am I supposed to affirm You, Lord? Do You even need affirmation? Or, does the affirmation concern me? Who is the end-user of this affirmation, anyway?

George Appleton wrote this particular prayer. I find myself pausing at regular points of this page, and I sit and allow the words to wash over me.

“I cannot grasp You/explain You/describe You.“ Appleton’s not-knowing seems to match mine in all the deep places. Why are You so distant? Yet, I stand in awe by all of the things expressed here.

Dear Lord, I focus on “Who are Thou?” And, I get a very partial answer. But, that’s okay. How on earth am I ever going to get a complete image of You in my mind, anyway. You, Lord, are infinite. I am not. You, Lord, are ready to listen. Help me to be equally ready to hear Your voice, and to heed Your words. Thank You, Lord.

@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

[1] The Oxford Book of Prayer, edited by George Appleton. (New York: Oxford University Press, reissued 2009), 56-57.

Seeking the Light—in Ignatian Prayer

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, May 28, 2015

Light be a light to the world

Seeking the Light—in Ignatian Prayer

I was a bit puzzled by the third step in the daily Ignatian prayer process, as interpreted by Margaret Silf. I know it’s a small thing, but I did not quite get what she meant. Or rather, one particular word she used.

Here’s the step, as found in Silf’s book on Ignatian spirituality and prayer, Inner Compass: Light-seeking: “Ask God to help you see and understand how His love has been working within you today. This is a gift of the Spirit, and it has been promised to all who sincerely seek it.”

I consider myself theologically knowledgeable, in basic terms. But here—Silf’s use of “light-seeking” interchangeably with “God’s love?” Perhaps I am overthinking what she’s doing here. I probably am.

What I sometimes do with concepts I have difficulty understanding is this: I break it down. I take it apart, in pieces. It’s then that I come to some understanding of the separate pieces. Yes, I have some idea of what constitutes “God’s love.” And, I am so moved by Silf’s imagery of “Light-seeking.” Thought-provoking mental image!

I’ve come to a comfort level of not-knowing. Or, at least not knowing in full. If I can’t square the phrase “God’s love” with “Light-seeking,” it’s okay. God will still love me just as much if I don’t understand some things about God. No one has a full understanding, anyhow. I suspect that I am in a better (read, more open-minded) position, now that I realize I just don’t know stuff.

And, that’s okay. God understands. God still gifts me with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, no matter how much or how little theological background I may have. I just need to be honest, open and willing. Willing to be open, with an open mind and heart. Amen. Amen.

@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 .