Awake my soul!
awake, harp and lyre!
I will awaken the dawn.
I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations;
I will sing of you among the peoples.
For great is your love, reaching the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches the skies.
Prayer is awakening. We have a tendency to fall asleep spiritually. Too often we forget who we are and what life is about. We forget the deeper realities of our existence. We fall asleep.
Prayer wakes us up. The very act of prayer is an acknowledgment of our spiritual nature. It is an acknowledgment of our longing for relationship with God. It reminds us that there is more to life than what we see and touch. It reminds us that there is more to life than the pressures we face and the distractions we chase after. Prayer wakes us up to God’s presence. It awakens us to the reality of the spiritual significance of ordinary life. It awakens us to the truth that life is an adventure that was meant to be lived in relationship with God.
But there is more. The awakening that prayer can bring has the potential of moving deeper and deeper into our hearts in a way that heals us and frees us from the depths of our stupor and forgetfulness.
Many of us have forgotten who God is. We have forgotten that God is love and that God’s love for us is intimate and unconditional. And many of us have forgotten who we are and who others are. We have forgotten that we are all God’s beloved children.
We may have come to believe that the opposite is true. We may have come to believe that God is harsh, punitive or abandoning. And we may have come to believe that we, or our neighbor, are unlovable. But this is not who God is. This is not who we are. And it is not who our neighbor is.
As we open our hearts and minds to God’s loving Spirit, these lies about God, about ourselves and about our neighbors can begin to fade. We can begin to awaken to the reality of who God is and to who we are and to who our neighbor is.
In prayer we are invited to awaken more and more to the reality of God’s love and to awaken more and more to the reality that we, along with all others, are loved. This is an awakening in joy and freedom, to be our true selves, to honor the dignity of each human being and to rest and rejoice in God’s unfailing love for us. This is the deepest awakening of all.
Prayer is learning to sing with the psalmist, “ Awake my soul! awake, harp and lyre! I will awaken the dawn. I will praise you, O Lord, …for great is your love, reaching the heavens; your faithfulness reaches the skies.”
Thank you for waking me up.
Thank you that prayer invites us
to the deepest awakening of all,
to remember who you are
who we are
and who our neighbor is.
Thank you for your unfailing love.
Thank you that we are your
Your love is so great, so vast,
Thank you for waking me
from my fearful slumber
into the glorious truth
of who you are.
Celebrate the awakenings that prayer has brought into your life.
Ask God to show you what further awakenings God might have for you.