Centering Prayer & Devotional – 7/15/21

Centering Prayer * St. James' Episcopal Church

The Welcoming Prayer for Healing – Centering Prayer (Please gently become aware of your interior state, and repeat this prayer.)

God, I welcome everything that comes to me in this moment.

God, I know it is for my healing.

God, I welcome all thoughts, and emotions.

God, I let go of my desire for control. God, I let go of my desire for approval.

God, I let go of my desire to change people.

God, I open myself to your love.

God, I open myself to your healing grace.

Now we will slowly breathe in through our nose, and then slowly breathe out through our mouths as we repeat one word, “Amen”, 3 times, while we refocus ourselves in our New Supernatural Reality Jesus: Amen. Amen. Amen.

Confession:

Almighty God, you love us, but we do not love you fully. You call, but we do not always listen. We often walk away from neighbors in need, wrapped in our own concerns. We often condone evil, hatred, warfare, and greed. God of grace, help us to admit our sin, so that as you move toward us in mercy, we may repent, turn to you, and receive forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Redeemer. Amen.

Bible Reading & Devotional:

DAILY MEDITATION: EXODUS 3:1-6, 9-12

Remove the sandals from your feet. (Exodus 3:5)

Nothing in Moses’ past could have prepared him for what was about to happen. Growing up in Pharaoh’s household, he may have heard tales of Abraham, but none of these stories would have been told in a way that stirred up faith. He knew that his own people had been slaves for centuries. So even if he had heard about the God of Israel intervening in his ancestors’ lives, that too would have seemed like tales from the ancient past.

It’s only natural, then, that Moses was awestruck when he saw the burning bush. Curious, he approached to find out more. That’s when he realized he was in God’s presence. Not only did he clearly hear God’s voice, but he could feel God’s holiness shining from the bush. So off came his shoes.

None of us have seen a burning bush as Moses did, but we still believe that God is present in us and with us. We can discern his presence in nature, in Scripture, in the sacraments, and even in the people around us. There are countless ordinary ways that God is present to us every day.

But sometimes, as he did with Moses, God does something extraordinary. He interacts with us in a more remarkable way. When that happens, you know it. You have a clear sense that God has pierced your heart, or set you on a new path, or convinced you of his presence in your life. In those experiences, you realize that you’re on holy ground because you know in your heart that God is there. You feel a sense of awe at God’s love, and that awe fills you with love for him and draws you to worship him. These are the kinds of experiences that change you.

You don’t have to have these kinds of experiences on a regular basis. God continues to work in your life every day—even when you “feel” nothing. Still, it never hurts to ask him to make his presence known to you in a powerful way. Quiet your heart and tell your loving Father in heaven that you are open to having him break into your ordinary life at any moment—even today, even now.

And keep those shoelaces loose!

“Holy God, help me to keep my heart open in case you want to surprise me today.”

Conclude with 5 Minutes of Silent Prayer

The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

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