Posted by: Mark Nielsen | April 22, 2011

You Are Here to Kneel

“You are not here to verify,
Instruct yourself, or inform curiosity
Or carry report. You are here to kneel
Where prayer has been valid. And prayer is more
Than an order of words, the conscious occupation
Of the praying mind, or the sound of the voice praying.
And what the dead had no speech for, when living,
They can tell you, being dead: the communication
Of the dead is tongued with fire beyond the language of the living.”

-T.S. Eliot, Little Gidding (The Fourth Quartet)

I would pray that your prayers will be valid there, where you are, today — but they are valid anywhere and everyday when offered to a merciful God. I would pray that your situation improve, but I’ve come to believe that your situation (like mine) is what it is, for a reason. So instead I pray that your prayer will change you, so that you suddenly see yourself for who you are… and in that moment, the prayer improves you… which is the point.

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