I’ve been thinking of this post for a while. The daily prayers from the C of E has become part of my daily routine which is a surprise really. Before my journey towards possible ordination really took momentum my prayer life was a little, well, sporadic. I prayed when I remembered to or on the way to work or when ever really. No structure, depth or focus. Yet it was good in its simplistic way. And in other ways not so because it was at my convenience and so without discipline.
Then, by my acting DDO, I was asked to try the Common worship daily prayer. Now, me being me, being told to do something without understanding why does not go very well. I did it for a while, got bored and just forgot. You see I thought my prayer life was good enough as it was.
So, what change? Well, I think what happened was that I found my relationship with God stagnated or at least, felt stilted. So I began to look for ways to move forward. The Examen helped at first. Thats where you reflect on the days good things and not so good things and see what can be drawn from it. But that dropped away too. The method didn’t stick with me depite pinning a postcard by dekhomai depicting the examen on my wall.
So again I turned to the Common worship daily prayer. Slowly I realised this this was just my prayer but the prayer of all who are part of the C of E. The same collect, the same words, the same choice of bible passages shared communally. Oh yes, and then the bible passages. I don’t think I have ever read the bible so regularly since taking up the daily prayer cycle!
These are just some of the reasons why I enjoy the CW daily prayer but there is one more thing. Daily is not just a once day event as there are three prayer for morning, evening and night. I tend to do morning and night prayer as I find the day is set right before God and then everything that has happened during the day is given over to Him. Evening prayer escapes me so far. So the discipline is now no longer a horrid word but a good thing. I enjoy doing it, and miss it if I’m prevented from doing it. I understand the why now. I understand prayer is not just priveate chatter between God and I but the widening of perspective of the needs of the everyone and I’m part of everyone. Its another way of being The body of Christ. Plus is quite comforting too as i’ve found its another way of alllowing God to speak. Which is obvious I guess!
The tools I use for saying the daily prayer are the iphone app from MyCofE and the online Daily prayer website from the Church of England There is the book too obviously but you also need a copy of the lectionary and a Bible. The first two links have everything you need.
We need prayer like we need oxygen. Prayer when needed is good and necessary but for real spiritual growth, regualr prayer is a must. People often say “I don’t have the time”…. which is true! So make time cos God, your Father, does for you.