I am very grateful for the people in my Renovare group. These group meets on Monday mornings, and we read books on Spirituality together, and we talk about ways in which our Spirituality is challenged and strengthened.
Throughout the years, different things we have read have helped me move further along my spiritual journey, from models of prayer and models of action to thought processes that will help me to see God more clearly as well as see God in others.
The reading has indeed been a blessing in my life. But I am also grateful for the creativity of the people in the group to continue to look for avenues of growth.
One of our members found that by spending time in meditation and silence, they were better able to pray and feel the connection to God. Recently, another member helped me immensely when she talked about “practicing the presence of God,” an idea put forward by Brother Lawrence, a medieval monk whose job in his monastery was to wash the dishes.
He sought to sense and feel the presence of God in every action of his day, whether in taking communion or in washing the dishes. As the member of our group shared this commitment to practice God’s presence in her life, she said that she had been using one of Brother Lawrence’s tools, which was to say before completing a task, “Lord, with your help, I am going to do this,” whatever “this” is.
As she shared her commitment, I felt myself moved to do the same thing. And so for the past week and a half, when I have had a meeting to go to, or an appointment in the office, or a sermon to preach or kids to put to bed, I have tried to say those words, and to use them as a reminder that I do not walk alone, whatever I am facing. It has been a calming influence for me, and it has helped me to remind myself that as I go, I go with God, both as an encourager to me and a spectator in all that I do.
I hope that this tool might help you as you “practice the presence of God” in your life.