This summer I was gifted "Prayer: Does it Make Any Difference?" by Philip Yancey by our adult Sunday School class. With my ceaseless list of things to do, I have hardly have time to read it, I am only into the third chapter thus far. Nevertheless, there have been some quotable quotes I thought I'd share...
"Like a flash of lightening, prayer exposes for a nanosecond what I would prefer to ignore: my own true state of fragile dependence. The undone tasks accumulating at home, my family and every other relation, temptations, health, plans for the future--all these I bring into that larger reality, God's sphere, where I find them curiously upended." (p.21)
"Prayer helps correct myopia, calling to mind a perspective I daily forget. I keep reversing roles, thinking of ways in which God should serve me, rather than vice versa." (p.21)
"When I shift direction, I realize that God already cares about my concerns--my uncle's cancer, world peace, a broken family, a rebellious teenager--more than I do." (p.23)
"I begin with God, who bears primary responsibility for what happens on earth, and ask what part I can play in God's work on earth." (p.23)
"Fundamentally [prayer] is a position, a placement of oneself." --Patricia Hampl (p.25)
"Only through prayer can I belive that truth [that God is God] in the midst of a world that colludes to suppress, not exalt, God." (p.25)
"'Be still and know that I am god': the Latin imperative for 'be still' is vacate. As Simon Tugwell explains. 'God invites us to take a holiday [vacation], to stop being God for a while, and let [God] be God.' Too often we think of prayer as a serious chore, something that must be scheduled around other appointments, shoehorned in among other pressing activities. We miss the point, says Tugwell: 'God is inviting us to take a break, to play truant. We can stop doing all those important things we have to do in our capacity as God, and leave it to [God] to be God.' Prayer allows me to admit my failures, weaknesses, and limitations to One who responds to human vulnerability with infinite mercy." (p. 26)