Monday, July 19, 2004

Augustine Day by Day - July 19 - Special Times for Prayer

"Let us desire continually, and thus let us pray continually. But at certain hours we ought to recall our minds from other cares and business, in which desire itself is almost somehow cooled down, to the very business of prayer. We must admonish ourselves by the words of our prayer to fix attention upon that which we desire."

-- Letter 130, 10

Prayer. May I seek you, Lord, by praying to you, and let me pray to you by believing in you. You have been preached to us. My faith prays to you, Lord, the faith you gave me and inspired in me by the Incarnation of your Son and the mission of your preacher.

-- Confessions 1, 1

July 19

I recall C.S. Lewis once said joy is the serious business of heaven; I see now Augustine calls prayer the serious business of earth. Amen. Let's get to business.

I'm also encouraged and delighted to hear him emphasize the fact that sometimes desires come not by feeling, but by doing. Holy reverence is a choice, not an impulse; the passionate desire for God is very often the fruit, not the root, of faith.

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