"What He ordains for us each moment is what is most holy, best, and most divine for us." Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday's Volume: Sacred Space

Confession: I am a bibliophile.  I haven't always been one -- at least I don't think I have.  But there were early symptoms as far back as 4th grade when I volunteered in the church library every Sunday afternoon.

According to my dictionary, a bibliophile [bib-lee-uh-fahyl] is "a person who loves or collects books, especially as examples of fine or unusual printing, binding, or the like."  I can't say my taste in books is toward the "unusual" or expensive -- except for the fact I like purchasing them rather than checking them out from the library, as they, being the media specialists, seem to get ticked when you write in theirs or, even worse, commit the cardinal sin and turn down a page corner.  But since "booklover" and "one who reads habitually" are also included in the definition, I think it's safe to confess, "Guilty."

It's not unusual for me to have several books going at one time.  And it's also not uncommon to have a book mark stuck in assorted and various ones just waiting to be picked up again ... because I got interested in something else.  Quite frankly, that's one of the reasons I keep a list of my books in the column of my blog.  It makes me finish it, because I won't record the thing until I've read the last page and closed the back cover.  But very often, I've wanted to comment about a book ... somewhat like a review, to let the reader know if I enjoyed it or not.  Whether its worth the time.  Thus "Friday's Volume."  I won't be posting something every week because I don't read a book a week.  Sometimes I linger over them.  Others are meant to be read over long periods of time -- like today's choice.  And quite honestly, I never took the Evelyn Woods Speed Reading course.  I ... read ... every ... word.

So here's my first Friday's Volume.
Sacred Space: the prayer book 2012

I'm nowhere through with this one as it's, as you can see, a 2012 prayer book.  But because of the true gem it is, I wanted to go ahead and share it with you -- just in case it peaked your interest.  No author is listed except The Irish Jesuits, and entries are taken from their website at www.sacredspace.ie
Sacred Space began the first Sunday of Advent, November 27, and will take me through Saturday, Dec. 1.  Each day I am invited to make a "space" in my day, thereby making it a sacred space.  It begins with something to think and pray about each day of the week.  I then engage in recognizing the presence of God with me; breathing His life into me; sitting quietly and becoming aware.

This week I've also been encouraged to ask for the grace to be free of my own preoccupations and to be open to what God may be saying to me.

And then I turn to the day's passage.  Sometimes it may be as lengthy as 10-11 verses.  Or it could be only two.  I read it several times -- normally out loud.  I linger over it.  I ask questions of the text.  I place myself there.  If need be, there are "helps" with the text that might move my thinking in a certain direction.

Today's reading was Mark 3:13-19; the account of Jesus going up the mountain and calling the 12 to follow Him -- and then appointing them apostles.  I've read it a dozen times, if not a hundred, through my life.  But today I recognized the sacredness of the moment.  The solemness.  The intimacy.  And probably the cluelessness of the apostles as to what was really happening.

What is stirring in me as I pray?
Am I consoled, troubled, left cold?
Has it moved me to act in a new way?

I share my feelings with Him.

And each time ends with the doxology:
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
World without end. Amen.

Sometimes I say it, but more often I sing it. 

This might not be the kind of book one would expect to find in a person's first book review, but it's one that's really impacting my life right now.  It's teaching me how to center down; how to pray; how to experience God and His presence on a daily basis.

If I knew how to include stars in this text, you'd see 5 of them.

Just an ordinary moment...


Rebekah A~ said...

For our ordinary moments to always include God is right and glorious and life giving.

Rebekah A~ said...

For our ordinary moments to always include God is right and glorious and life giving.