Take a moment, be still

This Lent, we’re sharing a series of weekly reflections provided by members of The Saint Francis Foundation’s Church Relations team. The Very Rev. Chas Marks has written a few thoughts for this Friday.

The late Billy Graham was once asked what were the three most important steps for planning and putting together his massive evangelistic crusades. His answer was simple. The three most important steps were prayer, prayer, and prayer.

It is sometimes all too easy to forget about the importance of prayer to the Christian life. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the busyness of life that we neglect to take a moment to remind ourselves of God’s presence with us, to say thank you, or even to ask for help.

Prayer should be our default setting, a practice that we turn to by habit, but on occasion, we need to be reminded of that.

The holy season Lent is like Christian spring training. It’s our time to go back to the basics and make sure we are doing what we can to live the lives to which God has called us. During this season, the Church calls us to make use of certain tools, the fundamental practices of our faith, and among these is, of course, prayer. We are encouraged to increase the time we spend in prayer, to perhaps use a new form of prayer, or even to begin or begin again the practice of daily prayer.

Prayer does not have to be complicated. Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, once compared prayer to sun bathing. He said,

“When you’re lying on the beach something is happening, something that has nothing to do with how you feel or how hard you’re trying. You’re not going to get a better tan by screwing up your eyes and concentrating. You give the time, and that’s it. All you have to do is turn up. And then things change, at their own pace. You simply have to be there where the light can get at you.”

Prayer is a way of basking in God’s light and love. You don’t have to say the right words or even any words. Just take a moment, be still, and know that you are in God’s presence. Prayer is a powerful force that is much more about what happens to us when we do it than what we say or we do.

Picture of Beth Cormack
Beth Cormack

Beth is the project manager for the Saint Francis Ministries Marketing and Communications team.

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