PRAYING IN SILENCE
LENT 2021 TURTON MOORLAND TEAM MINISTRY
1. Sunday – Introduction
2. Monday -Be still.
3. Tuesday -Awareness walk.
4. Wednesday – Imaginative Contemplation
5. Thursday – Lectio Divina
6. Friday – Review time
Introduction to silent prayer
We cannot put ourselves directly in the presence of God if we do not practice internal and external silence. In silence, we will find new energy and true unity. Silence gives us a new outlook on everything. The essential thing is not what we say but what God says to us and through us.
In that silence, He will listen to us; there He will speak to our soul, and there we will hear His voice. Listen in silence because if your heart is full of other things you cannot hear the voice of God.
But when you have listened to the voice of God in the stillness of your heart, then your heart is filled with God.
The contemplatives and ascetics of all ages have sought God in the silence and solitude of the desert, forest, and mountains. Jesus himself spent forty days in the desert and the mountains, communing with the Father in the silence of the night.
We too are called to withdraw at certain intervals into deeper silence and aloneness with God, together as a community as well as personally; to be alone with Him, to dwell lovingly in His presence, silent, empty, expectant. We cannot find God in noise or agitation. What is essential is not what we say but what God tells us and what He tells others through us. In silence He listens to us; in silence, He speaks to our souls.
In silence, we are granted the privilege of listening to His voice.
How is it possible to reach inner silence?
Sometimes we are apparently silent, and yet we have great discussions within, struggling with imaginary partners or with ourselves.
The turmoil of our thoughts can be compared to the storm that struck the disciples’ boat on the Sea of Galilee while Jesus was sleeping. Like them, we may be helpless, full of anxiety, and incapable of calming ourselves. But Christ is able to come to our help as well. As he rebuked the wind and the sea and “there was a great calm”, he can also quiet our heart when it is unsettled by fears and worries
Calming our souls requires a kind of simplicity: Silence means recognising that our worries cannot do much. Silence means leaving to God what is beyond our reach and capacity. Remaining silent, we trust and hope in God.
Thanks to the late Rev Alan Butler SCP and Rev Liz Devall SCP for material used.