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Monday, December 1, 2008

Prayer: Thoughts from A Course in Miracles

Prayer is a gift:
"Prayer is the greatest gift with which God blessed His Son at his creation." (Song of Prayer p.1)

It is the way by which we leave our separate goals and interests and realize our oneness with God. It is a reconnecting with God's gifts to us.

Prayer is a release:

"Prayer is a stepping aside, a letting go, a quiet time of listening and loving." (SP p.2)

Through prayer we release the needs we think we have into the loving Hands of God, so that He can show us the answer that is already present. It becomes a time of renewal and awareness. It is in those quiet times when God's answers and insights come to us. Prayer becomes a way of pausing from the fears, judgments and worries of the world that block us from our answers so that love and forgiveness can show us a new perspective.

Prayer is a recognition:

Prayer is a means for making a shift in our perception, for changing our minds about our situation, rather than changing the situation.

"It [prayer] is the medium of miracles . . . the only meaningful prayer is for forgiveness . . . Prayer for forgiveness is nothing more than a request that you may be able to recognize what you already have." (T p.45)

Prayer realigns us:

Prayer puts us "back on track." Through those quiet times of joining with our Source, we are reminded of the peace and serenity that are our true inheritance. That "you yourself are a miracle of God." (T p.45) And as God's miracle, nothing is impossible for you to face and work through.

Prayer is a willingness:

Through prayer, we can give our "little willingness" to the Holy Spirit and ask how to express our healed perception in the world: what to say, what to do, etc.

"There are decisions to make here [in the world], and they must be made whether they be illusions or not." (SP p.2)

Our goal is not to make the problems we experience "real," but to be willing to look at the problem and let go of your goal or outcome and ask only for God's Answer of love to guide us.

Praying for others:

In praying for others, we are not asked to solve their problems or mediate between them and God.

"But it [praying for others] does mean that another stands beside you and helps to raise you up to God." (SP p.2)

Since "prayer is always for yourself," (SP p.5) praying for others becomes a way of strengthening your own faith. As you reach out to others in loving support, you can't help but heal issues in your own life, for by offering love to others, you automatically receive! Now you realize there is no difference between the healing of your life and another's, for they are both the same. And this is the prayer we offer to all who join with us:

"I cannot go without you, for you are a part of me." (SP p.8)

Prayer works:

As we truly understand and practice together the power of prayer, we recognize that our prayers are answered as we extend our love. When we recognize the Holy Spirit's presence in all people and situations, His answer to our needs is given us, for we are offering our willingness and asking for nothing else but healing. Prayer then becomes not a thing we do in our rooms at night with hands folded, beseeching God to meet our needs, but a blessing of love we offer to every event and person who comes our way day by day, moment by moment. Prayer works, for the Christ is recognized!

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