Metropolitan Anthony (bloom): The shortest prayer

What, in our days, is the significance of prayers for young Christians living among sekuljarizovannogo world? How to make a prayer exactly?

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Life and prayer are inseparable from each other; a life without prayer is a life that lacks the most important dimension; it is a life “in the plane”, without depth, life in two dimensions of space and time; it is a life of contentment visible contentment to others, but others, as a phenomenon in a physical sense, others in which we do not find all the immensity and eternity of his destiny. The value of prayer is to discover and affirm life itself the fact that everything has a measure of eternity and everyone has a dimension of immensity. The world in which we live – not a godless world, that we so well know how to profane, but in its essence it came from the hands of God and loved by God. Its price in the eyes of God all life and all death of His only begotten Son, and our prayer demonstrates that we know this, we know that every person and every thing around us is sacred in the sight of God: favorite Them, they become dear to us. Not to pray is to leave God out of all that exists, and not only Him, but all what He means to the world he had created, the world in which we live.

We often think that it is difficult to coordinate life and prayer. This is a fallacy, a misconception. It comes from the fact that we have a false idea about life and about prayer. We imagine that life is to fuss and prayer is that somewhere to be alone and forget all about the middle and about our human existence. This is not true. It’s libel to slander to prayer.

To learn to pray, we must first be in solidarity with the entire reality of man, the reality of his fate and the fate of the world: the end to take care of you. This is the essence of the act of God in the Incarnation. That’s the fullness of what we call “intercession”; usually we take intercession, as a polite reminder to God that He forgot to do; in fact it is to make a move, putting us in the mediastinum tragic a situation as did his Christ, becoming human once and for all. We need to take a step that will put us in the center of a situation where we will never be able to go out; the solidarity of the Christian, of Christ, is directed simultaneously to two opposite poles: the incarnate Christ, true man and true God, to the end in solidarity with the man, when he was in his sin turns to God, and to the end in solidarity with God when He speaks to man. This dual solidarity makes us, in a sense, alien to both camps and, at the same time, common to both camps. This is the basis – the basis of the position of the Christian.

You say, “What can we do?” So: prayer is born from two sources; either from enthusiastic wonder to God and the things of God: our fellowmen and the world around us, in spite of his shadow; or of feelings of tragedy – our own and especially others. One modern thinker said, “When I’m hungry, it’s a physical phenomenon; if my neighbor is hungry is a moral phenomenon.” And here is the tragedy which faces us in every moment: my roommate is always hungry; this is not always a famine of bread, sometimes it’s hunger for human gesture, affectionate look. Here begins the prayer: in this responsiveness on the wondrous and tragic. There is this responsiveness – all easily; in love it is easy for us to pray, and it is easy to pray when we pierces the feeling of tragedy.

Well, in another time? So, in another time of prayer and life must be one. I don’t have time to talk much about it, but I would just like to say this: get up in the morning, put yourself before God and say, “Lord, bless me and bless this starting time!” and then treat the whole day as gift from God and look at himself as a messenger of God, in that unknown that represents the starting day. This means simply something very difficult, namely, that whatever happened this day – nothing alien to the will of God; all without exception – the circumstances in which the Lord wished us to put to you was His presence, His love, His compassion, His creative mind, His courage… And, in addition, whenever you meet with some situation, you are the one who God put in there to carry Christian service, to be a part of the body of Christ and the action of God. If you do so, it is easy to see that in every moment you will have to turn to God and say, “o Lord, enlighten my mind, strengthen and direct my will, give me a heart ardent, help me!”

In other minutes, you will be able to say, “thank God!” And if you are intelligent and know how to be grateful for, you will avoid the folly which is called vanity or pride, when we imagine, like I did something I could not do. God did it; God has made us a wonderful gift, allowing us to do it.

And evening when you again stand before God and quickly sorted in the memory of the past day, you will be able to sing his praises, praise him, thank Him, cry other and cry about yourself. If you start this way to connect the life with your prayer, between them will never break, and life will be the fuel that feeds every moment, the fire that will flare up more and become brighter and gradually transform yourself into the burning Kupina, which says the Scriptures.

Speech to the young people in taizé, September 2, 1967.

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