Lately, my times of prayer seem to be interwoven with memories of time-and-place experiences in life. These reveries include entire clusters of beloved people. (For example, when I remember our San Leandro, California years, my mind gathers together Rich and Gretchen, Liz and Larry, Mary and Jim, Barry, Ralph, Sandy, Linda, Wendy, Aunt Mona, Chris and our kids, and my 3rd-4th graders—and the things we accomplished together. The things we enjoyed together.) This clustering may be my preferred form of prayer.
When prayer moments present themselves—sometimes in solitary quiet, and sometimes in the noisy crowd of daily tasks—I choose a place and time, recalling how it was to live within God’s grace there-and-then. Reimagining the specifics of that location—the gritty, sensory fundamentals of memory—I hearken back to that situation, using my mind’s eye to visualize those dear souls. One by one, my prayers move among these remembered saints. Those good days. First and foremost, I thank God for these good people. For the good we helped bring about. For their continued health and well-being.
This musing can bring emotional and spiritual fulfillment. My thoughts linger over the people and the events: Circumstances that brought and held us together. The effects of our shared work and witness. Calm and reassurance infuse my spirit. If I’m at the end of my day, these prayer clusters send me towards a good night’s sleep with gratitude, and just a bit of enduring amazement. (God has graced my life with truly remarkable folks!)
Perhaps you could try clustering prayers. You, too, are among God’s amazing people. Your life has been filled with thanks-inspiring events. And you may be part of one or more of the clusters for whom—with whom—I pray.
Would that make us reciprocally clustered prayer partners…?
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