Floating in Prayer
Prayer is something that I enter into and then happens to me. At the end of Thomas H. Green’s book I am overwhelmed with the image of one who is being pulled by a river. The person is not swimming or resisting the current. They do not panic and are not overly eager to deviate from the direction of the flow. This is Green’s greatest image of prayer; this is the next step along our journey of prayer. One does not start in this move of God. One must enter in. The opening chapters of Green’s book describe the different phases of entering into prayer and many of these are labor intensive. They deal with petty distractions and juvenile weaknesses of the sinful self. Prayer becomes a progress of gradual surrender. More of prayer becomes what God does in us instead of what we do for God. The better one prays the less one actually does. Elite prayer will look anything but elite: it may look like it is not taking place at all. I don’t need to kill myself in order to mature in prayer. I may, in fact, need to take less offensive measures and allow myself to become emerged in God’s presence. God wants to direct me and for me to float in his stream. Green’s image is eye opening and challenges my understanding of mature prayer. I hope that I can allow God to minister during my times of prayer instead of me trying to do all the work.