Sunday, January 28, 2007

Heaven and Earth

> Image Credit <
Nneka is a blogger to reckon with!

I scan many blogs most days, looking for topic ideas for this blog and, always, making an effort to stay tuned-in to where the culture's heading. My scanning is always slowed to a stop--to pause, read, and reflect--when I arrive at Nneka's blog:
Balanced Life Center ~ Spirituality Applied to Life
In her blog post from yesterday ( On Earth As It Is In Heaven ), she writes:

"When asked by his disciples how they should pray, Jesus responded with these words:

Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

"I pray the Our Father as it is written when I feel separate from God. It helps me to clear the seeming space between us. It reminds me that God is always with me, ever near."

She goes on to speak of the results of her "meditations" on what "heaven" means:

"Heaven, in this context, is not a physical destination in some time in the future. Heaven is the unseen realm of All there is. It is the space in which God abides. The place of radiant health, unconditional love, infinite supply, joy, harmony, and all good. It is like the steam form of H2O. Conversely, earth is the manifest realm. The place that we see, smell, taste, hear, and feel. We may experience challenges and triumphs. It is like the ice form of H2O.
"Between the two is our lens. A space of our own creation. The prayer, “On earth as it is in heaven,” helps to thin the layer between, or clear up the lens so that we may experience all that there is in the invisible."

Fascinating... I highly recommend your regularly reading her blog!

The very last sentence of her post is:
"Do you have any prayers that you learned as a child, but have come to understand as an adult?"

I had to answer yes and I had to bring the interaction between me and Nneka's blog here.

I published my first book of poetry last year. In that book was a poem that incorporated a prayer I'd said a gazillion times when I was a child. Scared me to hell but I said it; partly at the prompting of my parents, partly out of fear of God.
Here's the prayer:

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep;
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.

As an adult, I'd come to realize that this is a
most positive prayer; yet still, in my late fifties, I added four more lines to the prayer, to calm the fevered bosom of my little boy self, alone with God, headed toward sleep, and afraid of death...

Here's my poem:

Child’s (?) Prayer

Now I lay me down to sleep
And hope for dreams of bliss.
I pray the Lord my soul to keep;
His wish may I not miss.
If I should die before I wake,
May He make loved ones glad.
I pray the Lord my soul to take
But let folks not be sad.

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