In which Ruth ponders scary prayer

I’ve been reading a little of Harry William’s ‘Becoming What I Am’, his book on prayer. It is dated of course, being written in 1977, but still relevant today.

For absolute love, God’s love, makes us fully ourselves, instead of the half people we generally are. And to become fully yourself is a terrible risk. It would commit you to God knows what and lead you God knows where. If I open my heart in simplicity to God’s love I might soon find myself in Bangladesh or something of the sort, or I might find myself disagreeing or even agreeing with Mrs Whitehouse. Or letting in God’s love might prompt me to join the Campaign for Homosexual Equality, or the Tory Party, or it might lead me actively to support the Tribune Group; it might make me concerned about the oppressed peoples of the Third World or even about my neighbour next door who is lonely. And God’s love has been known to make the most respectable people enjoy a pub crawl. And letting in God’s love is no guarantee at all that I will necessarily remain an enthusiastic member of the Church of England or even of the Anglo-Catholic set-up. And so, not so much in our minds consciously as in our bones unconsciously, we see to it that when we pray we keep ourselves tied up in knots. It is much safer. Let us keep on the armour of our sophistication and plump for security.

This is today’s scary Lenten thought. I might not sleep tonight because of it.

cat pray

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