There’s another reason I have not blogged of late.
My spiritual/religious life has taken something of an inward turn. Blogging requires that you have something to say, and a need to say, and while I’m certain there are probably some of you hanging on my every word (raise your hands… yeah, I didn’t think there were many of you), I’ve reached a point where I’m not hanging on my every word.
I have become much more focused in my devotional life.
I have a host of apps I use on my iPad for this. There’s iBreviary, an app packed with Catholic prayers and rites and readings and whatnot. And the Church of England has a couple of apps, Daily Prayer and Lectionary, which Jennifer and I subscribe to. And even the dear old Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, which has shown me the hairy back of its hand more than a few times, has a nice Small Catechism app more grounded in Martin Luther’s cranky language than the feel-good therapy of the liberal church.
So here’s what my day looks like. In the morning, I rise and say Luther’s morning prayer, and I follow that up with Anglican morning prayer, the CoE’s saint of the day if there is one (and/or the saint of the day from iBreviary), and then a reading of day’s saint from Alban Butler’s Lives of the Saints (the Kindle edition was stunningly cheap) and a chapter from the Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church. And then I read the scripture readings for the day. This takes around an hour, after which I scan through the news and a few websites I’ve come to really appreciate. Then I cheerfully — as Martin Luther commanded — go to work, sometimes after reading Luther’s admonitions to husbands and employees.
And then around noon, I say iBreviary’s noon prayer, and follow that up with a chapter from St. Benedict’s Rule for Monasteries and then a chapter from St. Ambrose’s On The Duties of the Clergy and then either lunch or short nap or back to work.
At night, Jennifer and I say Anglican night prayer together, usually proceeded by the day’s gospel. I follow with another chapter from the Roman Catechism and St. Amrose, then my favorite act of contrition from iBreviary (“Forgive me my sins, O Lord, forgive me my sins!”), the Te Deum, Luther’s evening prayer, and then I go to sleep. Probably not as cheerfully as Martin Luther commanded, but sleep all the same.
It is wonderfully centering and calming, a reminder that the world is bigger than our current struggles. That saints wage all sorts of struggles and can be faithful in any number of ways. I honestly don’t have a lot to say right now, at least about God or scripture or politics. It is more important to me right now that I listen to the wisdom of prayer, of God, and of the ages — I am inclined to think the ancients knew more about being human than we do. I hope that’s okay. I will poke my head out of my burrow more often, specially once Kesslyn Runs is published.
But right now, it just soothes my soul and nourishes my spirit to simply listen.