Daily Riches: Contemplative Prayer and Friendship with God (Thomas Keating)

“Contemplative prayer is a deepening of faith that moves beyond thoughts and concepts. One just listens to God, open and receptive to the divine presence in one’s inmost being as its source. One listens not with a view to hearing something, but with a view to becoming aware of the obstacles to one’s friendship with God.” Thomas Keating


To his disciples Jesus said:
“I no longer call you servants,
because a servant does not know
his master’s business.
Instead, I have called you friends,
for everything that I learned from my Father
I have made known to you. …

And to his Father Jesus said:
I have made you known to them,
and will continue to make you known
in order that the love you have for me
may be in them
and that I myself may be in them.”
John 15:15 and 17:26

Moving From the Head to the Heart

  • Sometimes we think of God mostly as “out there.” Keating suggests listening for God’s presence in your “inmost being.” Does that seem strange or wrong, or perhaps misguided, to you?
  • Can you wrap your head around the God of heaven being your “friend” and making his residence “in” you (something emphasized by Jesus in John 13-17)?
  • “One listens … with a view to becoming aware of the obstacles to one’s friendship with God.” Are you willing to listen that way? If so, what specific plan can you make to see that you follow through with your good intentions?

Abba, I can’t understand why you would long to be my friend, desire my affection, or condescend to live in me. As I’m able to bear it, and as I take time to listen to you, please show me the obstacles in my life that hinder our friendship.

__________

For More: The Human Condition by Thomas Keating

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The “Daily Riches” from RicherByFar are for your encouragement as you seek after God, and as he seeks after you. My goal is to give you something of uncommon value each day in less than 400 words. I hope you’ll follow my blog, and share it with others. I appreciate your interest!  –  Bill (Psalm 90:14)

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