Categories
Prayers Scripture

A prayer when reading scripture

May your word fall on me and cover me;
May it root deeply in me and grow in me;
May it fill me full and bear fruit in me,
Overflowing for you.

dw

For context, look at the parable of the sower and it’s explanation in Luke 8:4-15.

I say this prayer pretty much every time I read the Bible. Why, especially now that I seem to be able to recite it without even thinking about it? What’s the point?

This prayer, even when I’m in a hurry and hardly think about it, expresses my true desire. This is what I want the reading of scripture to do to me, within me, and through me…even when I’m hurried or distracted or skeptical or depressed. No matter what is going on in me, I want God’s word to have this effect, long-term, in my life.

So I ask for it…because I know God hears and answers more faithfully than I pray or read. For this I am grateful.


  • What is your experience with reading scripture?
  • If you find it challenging, what sorts of things would help you?
  • Though I have specifically mentioned scripture, I believe God’s word can be sown in our lives at any moment of any day through the prompting and counsel of the Holy Spirit: how open are we to receiving God’s word in that form and letting it root in our lives and bear fruit?
  • I see a clear parallel between the thorns in the Luke passage and the ashes in the quote from Thomas Merton in the last post. I think these thorns and ashes, the distractions and anxieties of my life, are what hold me back, choke out the fire of God’s Spirit in me. What is your experience like?

Again, I encourage you to write down your thoughts. Why? It makes space for you to think them, decide if you believe them or not, revise them, and remember them later.

Grace and peace to you…

dw

Categories
Other Writings the real self

Thomas Merton on the ‘real self’

I consider that the spiritual life is the life of [one’s] real self, the life of that interior self whose flame is so often allowed to be smothered under the ashes of anxiety and futile concern.

— Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island

In these few words Merton has spelled out the scope of this blog:

  • the ‘real self’ God made us to be;
  • how to find it;
  • and how to fan it aflame amid the ashes of our lives.

It boils down to what I have come to believe is the good news of the Gospel:

Following Jesus leads us from our fake selves to our real selves,

from living in our heads to living from our hearts,

from advancing our own agenda to receiving the gift of His,

from thirsting for the next transient thrill to drinking deeply of eternal life.


  • What do you think of the notion that each of us has a ‘real self’ that God loves and nurtures?
  • To what extent do you feel in touch with your real self?
  • What are the ashes in your life that hinder your real self from emerging and thriving?

I encourage you to consider writing out your answers, either in a journal or in the comments section (as others have done).

Grace and peace to you…

dw

Categories
Scripture

Let there be light

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.”

Genesis 1:3-4, NRSV Bible with the Apocrypha

Welcome to the very first post on becoming flame. As you may have already read on the About page, my aim is to share what I hope will encourage us all in our journeys to become who God means us to be, fully alive, “all flame”.

I encourage all visitors to use comments for discussion, sharing, community building.  Do remember though: this site is open to the public – anything you share will be out there for all to see.  (If you decide you’d like one of your comments removed, just let me know through the Contact page and I’ll remove it as soon as I can.)  I reserve the right to remove comments I feel are not appropriate.

I think that covers the logistics.  I hope you find becoming flame helpful – grace and peace to you on the journey.

dw

photo by dw

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