I have been most fortunate to have made the acquaintance of and had opportunity to stay with and worship with several religious communities. Each community is lovely and unique with the various personalities that form it. However, one thing that is the same in all of the communities is the rhythm of prayer. Prayer is never rushed, words of the beloved psalms are never hurried, and it is quiet and contemplative. The rhythm is intended to offer peace, comfort, and solace. The familiar psalms and prayers are intended to be thought about, intended to make an impact.
I have a great appreciation for this rhythm and its serenity and peacefulness. Coming from a time of busyness and filled days that are zoomed through as I flit from commitment to commitment it realize just easy it is to lose focus. And prayer time, as important as it is, can sometimes be lost. Tonight, as I sat with the brothers of the Holy Cross for Compline I was reminded that even if I have not made time for or have forgotten to make time for quiet and prayer there are communities at prayer, remembering the needs of the many people in the world, praying for them. This is a source of great comfort.
Most of us likely give little thought to the fact that there is someone, particularly religious communities, constantly at prayer. While my specific concerns or life may not be front and center in the prayers the general needs are remembered. Someone, somewhere prays for us every hour of every day. As we give more thought to that fact I am certain that we will find great comfort and solace in the knowledge. While I have always known that there are communities at prayer and while I have shared in the life of the communities on a number of occasions, it was only today that I consciously acknowledged that someone, somewhere is praying. Those prayers are intended for you and for me even if we never meet or have opportunity to worship in that community. It doesn’t mean that we abdicate responsibility to pray for one another rather it is a reminder that prayer continues, voices are raised up and we are brought before God in prayer as we in turn bring ourselves and others to prayer.
“I find it really beautiful when someone prays for you without you knowing. I don’t think there’s any form of deeper and purer love.” (source Unknown)