Please join me this summer as we explore...
“Be still and know that I am God”
WHEN & WHERE:
Gatherings begin Thursday June 8th, 2023
Six Thursday evenings, meeting every other week / Jun - Aug / 7-8:30pm
Location: Church of the Resurrection in Wheaton, IL (Family Worship room)
HOW WE WILL SPEND OUR TIME
During our time together...
We’ll explore- what is contemplation and how is it different from meditation or other ways of praying
We’ll ponder together- is contemplative prayer just another prayer method, or is it an invitation and movement of God
We’ll consider some of the phase/stage models and movements in prayer from our Christian tradition
We’ll share & discuss the book chapters and your discoveries
Most importantly - we will practice together, as we learn from Jesus! Not just talk about, but do
This class might not be for everyone- pray...notice...listen
How might I know if God's inviting me to explore contemplative prayer?
Are you longing for more quiet, less words or yearn for simple silence & stillness
Have some of your faithful practices been feeling dry or stale
Do you feel drawn to some of the chapter topics below, even if you're not sure why
Begun to notice a desire to “do” less and just “be” with God
Struggling in your prayer time with a busy & distracted mind
SCHEDULE & TOPICS:
Class 1 – June 8th – God is our Homeland/Parting the Veil: The Illusion of Separation
Class 2 - June 22nd – The Wild Hawk of the Mind
Class 3 – July 6th – The Body’s call to Prayer
Class 4 – July 20th – The Three Doorways of the Present Moment
Class 5 – Aug 3rd – The Riddles of Distraction
Class 6 – Aug 17th – From Victim To Witness/Practicing with Affliction
TO REGISTER, CLICK HERE
RESOURCE needed for this class:
Into the Silent Land; A Guide to the Christian Practice of Contemplation by Martin Laird
Please purchase the book on your own, so that you have it before the first class.
(Come to our first class having read the Intro & Chapter 1)
If you are newer to contemplation, you might find it helpful to read this book in preparation:
Contemplative Prayer; Praying when the well runs dry by Joann Nesser
But when you pray,
go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen.
Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans,
for they think they will be heard because of their many words.
Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
QUESTIONS ABOUT CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER?
Click here for an article by Focus on the Family.
A review of "Into the Silent Land" by Christianity Today
The Gift of Contemplative Prayer.... article click here.
Quotes on Christian contemplation from trusted resources...
“Gregory the Great (sixth century), summarizing the Christian contemplative tradition, expressed it as 'resting in God.'
This was the classical meaning of Contemplative Prayer in the Christian tradition for the first sixteen centuries.”
...in regards to how to conduct oneself during prayer in regard to thoughts & the distracted mind...the author from *the Cloud of Unknowing writes;
"...anyone who expects to advance without having meditated often on his own sinfulness, the Passion of Christ, and the kindness, goodness, and dignity of God, will most certainly go astray and fail in his purpose. But a person who has long pondered these things must eventually leave them behind....
It is God, and he alone, who can fully satisfy the hunger and longing of our spirit which transformed by his redeeming grace is enabled to embrace him by love. He whom neither men nor angels can grasp by knowledge can be embraced by love. For the intellect of both men and angles is too small to comprehend God as he is in himself."
“Union with God is not something we acquire by a technique but the grounding truth of our lives that engenders the very search for God.
Because God is the ground of our being, the relationship between creature and Creator is such that, by sheer grace, separation is not possible.
God does not know how to be absent.
The fact that most of us experience throughout most of our lives a sense of absence or distance from God is the great illusion that we are caught up in; it is the human condition.
The sense of separation from God is real, but the meeting of stillness reveals that this perceived separation does not have the last word.”
― Martin Laird, Into the Silent Land: A Guide to the Christian Practice of Contemplation
Did you know...?
'We are built for contemplation.
We are built to commune with God!"
Christian contemplative practices foster our ability to recognize, embody and live within the loving presence of God in ourselves and in our world.