Ever feel like you have an empty heart and head when it comes to prayer? Okay, so if you grew up in the traditional church of the 60’s and 70’s, you always have the fallback of the Lord’s Prayer and maybe Psalm 23, but sometimes even those inspired pieces of liturgy are coming out dry. Reams of paper have been used up on books concerning the topic of communication with the Almighty, as we read with a renewed determination to ‘try, try again’, after which the passion cools once more and our souls start feeling as dusty as the books that now sit on the shelf. Then there are passages in the Bible itself that seem contradictory (except they aren’t) when it talks about persistent prayer without using meaningless repetition.
Right. Join the club. And I suspect it’s not an exclusive one. But rather than just give up to my natural boredom monster (cf: About Page), it behooves me to explore other strategies in this oft times challenge to obey my Lord’s injunction to “pray without ceasing” and to “not grow weary in doing good” and all that. If it was important to Jesus, then it must be so to me.
But here’s the encouraging part! Picture an Olympic diver. (Just not one wearing a Speedo. I’m sorry, but that 70’s style irrefutably should never have happened….)
In the beginning when he started learning this artful skill, naturally it took hours of instruction and practice, and he had a platform and/or a springboard. The good news is, now that he has progressed to the level of an Olympian, he still uses a platform and/or springboard!!
Now, being a child of the 70’s, I used to kind of pooh-pooh the idea of scripted prayers. The Jesus Movement that occurred in the middle of the last century brought really important reforms into the church, but there were unfortunately some really sweet babies that were thrown out the bathwater: the substantive lyrical teaching of the traditional hymns, the respect for the grandeur of Deity, and (catch this) the springboard of litany and liturgy, that is, scripted praise and prayer.
So here is my offering. Jesus’ modern day disciples should never feel downcast for a lack of inspirational prayer. Because our physical bodies do have an effect on our spiritual motivation. Because the alarm clock didn’t go off, or the baby was barfing all night. Because I made a mistake at work, and my beloved parent is ill. But all this overabundance of life circumstances doesn’t preclude a lack of communication with our Heavenly Father; if anything, it necessitates it even more.
This page is a resource of Sacred Springboards. Some modern, some aged, some ancient, all incredibly useful. And you can go “off script” at any time.
Just be careful if you do, ‘cuz you might find yourself swimming in the deep end with God!
Here’s the selection, with new ones being added: