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Jesus invites me to ‘learn the unforced rhythms of grace’ – (Matthew 11:29 in the Message Bible) – so I’m calling this a ‘rhythm’ rather than a ‘rule’ of life, in seeking to respond to three ‘sounds’ heard while on Retreat in 2015.
1) The Cross – Now we remain challenged me to linger over Jesus’ Passion, especially the refrain: “We hold the death of the Lord deep in our heart. Living, now we remain with Jesus the Christ”
2) Holiness – (Lev. 20:26) “You are to be holy to Me because I, the LORD, am holy, and I have set you apart from the nations to be my own” then (1 Pet 1:15,16) “But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: ‘be holy, because I am holy’” I in corporate & private prayer
3) Prayer – (1 Peter 4:7 – NEB) “ … lead an ordered and sober life given to prayer …”
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Considering these ‘sounds’ I will try to blend the following into my lifestyle:
A. Steady focus on the Cross
The fountain-head of God’s favour. If I do not stand in grace I will not stand at all
B. Openness to the Holy Spirit
Recognising my incompleteness without Him.
C.  Devoting quality time to Scripture
Reading, study and meditation
D.  Learning/practising various ‘forms’ of prayer
Cultivating a life that truly prays
E.  Leaving off cerebral analysis
By entrusting all to God & not relying on my own understanding
F.  Acknowledging God’s Presence
Remembering that all of life is a sacrament

G.  Developing routines to ensure wise use of time
Disciplined not enslaved
H.  Taking regular walks
For exercise and reflection (while enjoying God’s creation & friendship)
I.  Nurturing stillness
Avoiding rush, distrusting my own sense of urgency, being quiet in order to listen and discern, not hurrying to speak or respond
J.  Making space for wonder and mystery
Inviting the unexpected, the spontaneous and pattern-breaking adventures
K.  Meeting people respectfully, compassionately, peacefully, cheerfully
‘Hidden not hiding’
L.  Engaging with a spiritual companion/director
For accountability, advice and encouragement
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For these ‘disciplines’ alongside
CONTRITION, COMPASSION, COMMUNION
I pray this prayer of St Francis:
“Lord of life,
Help me to live each day quietly, easily
To lean on Your strength trustfully, restfully
To wait for the unfolding of Your Will patiently, serenely
To meet others peacefully, joyously
To face each day confidently, courageously.
Amen.”

 

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