“Teach us to Pray”
Jesus was praying in a certain place, and I suppose his disciples were watching. When he finished his quiet time with God, one of them said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray.” And Jesus did teach them.
I wonder who taught you to pray. Likely it wasn’t just one person. Maybe a parent taught you to say a prayer before sharing a meal. Maybe a Sunday School teacher got you to memorize the Lord’s Prayer when you were young. Perhaps a camp counsellor or VBS leader invited you to share in a popcorn prayer or a squeeze prayer where everyone adds their own words of thanks or their needs or concerns about the world. Maybe someone once gave you a prayer book with a prayer you could read for each day of the week or for morning and evening.
Or maybe you learned to pray by listening to others doing it, slowly picking up the pattern and potential vocabulary: “Dear God… thank you Lord… I’m sorry for… Please help… surround us with your love… pour out your blessing… in Jesus’ name I pray…” And then you tentatively began to open your mouth and express yourself to God … Read more »
“Married to a Faithful God”
As most of you know, I have recently gone back to school. I’ve begun working on a Doctor of Ministry degree with a focus on pastoral care for engaged and married couples, especially couples that come from two different church backgrounds. Last week I finished the paper for the first course on Contextual Theology that I took in June, and started to turn my attention towards the courses I’ll be taking in the Fall and Winter terms coming up. I discovered that I can make use of the libraries of the Saskatoon Theological Union, and I took out a pile of books on Friday related to the theology and spirituality of marriage. I’m just beginning to put together a reading list for a course on marriage next winter.
So it’s interesting that marriage is the theme of our reading from the prophet Hosea today. In this case, Hosea isn’t offering a theology of marriage for us to consider in our own relationships. And he isn’t really giving us any advice for our marriages, but he is using marriage as a metaphor for the relationship between God and God’s people.
Instead of giving a speech or writing … Read more »