Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 51 year old Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church of Detroit. Piety Hill refers to the old name for our neighborhood. The neighborhood has changed a great deal in the over 150 years we have been on this corner (but not our traditional biblical theology) and it is now known for the neighboring theatres, the professional baseball and football stadiums and new hockey/basketball arena.

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Location: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Monday, November 17, 2014

We are what we pray - Rector's Rambling for November 16, 2014

Last month we laid to rest the mortal remains of Barbara Frisby.   Like the service for Mary Bedford in August, it was a moving event, both of which honored “matriarchs” of the parish.
At Barbara’s service, her son David read a moving prayer that was found among Barbara’s things.  It was obviously well used and prayed over the years.  One thing the Church has said is that prayer changes us.  In this case, we can see in Barbara a life modeled very closely to the prayer.

All through the day, O Lord,
let me touch as many lives
as possible for thee.
And every life I touch,
do by thy Holy Spirit quicken.
Whether through the word I speak,
the prayer I breathe,
the letters I write,
or the life I live.
In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

This prayer sums up, what is known in the discipline of Ascetical Theology, as a unitive prayer.  The greatest goal of the life of prayer is to have one’s own will united perfectly with the will of God.
As members of the Body of Christ, we seek to draw near to Christ in prayer for many reasons.  Some of these reasons include improving our conscious contact with God, so that we are more aware of his presence at all times, petitioning for our needs and the needs of others, for deeper contrition for sin so that we not only sorrow for them, but purpose true amendment of life, to glorify Him, and to express gratitude.
But a deeper goal in prayer is to be perfectly united with the Will of God, so that whatt we want and what we do mirrors more perfectly His Will for us.  Prayer forms us, and even in the few lines of prayer above, we see a desire to live and serve God by bringing His love to others, and others to His love.
Let this be our prayer as well!  May we touch other lives for Christ, that he may be gloried, worshipped and adored!