Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Divine Hours

With my whole heart I seek you; let me not stray from your commandments. Psalm 119:10
It's 5:30am and I'm sitting by the glowing Christmas tree in the otherwise dark living room.
Everyone else is asleep. I just put a variation of this in the oven and it smells really good.

It's rare to get a moment like this, even at 5:30. One of the boys is usually awake.

I wish we could set up a video camera to capture all that happens here in a course of a night.

Kristian and I always start out in the same bed at the same time but never end up there in the morning. I'm usually in the living room with Jackson, having fallen asleep in a chair after feeding, and Kristian is asleep on a pile of blankets on the floor of Caedmon's room with the little guy cuddled up next to him, or jumping all over him saying "eat! eat! eat!" Lately he's been calling for Daddy about 4:30 or 5am.

One day we will get a full night's sleep, though maybe not for a while. That's ok.

I will offer you a sacrifice and praise your name, O Lord, for it is good. Psalm 54:6

During Advent I'm reading through The Divine Hours prayer book, which gives fixed-hour prayers and scripture for morning, noon, and night.  To be honest, I usually only make time for one of these, but I'd love to be in the habit of pausing and reading for all three.

Fixed-hour pray has been used throughout history.  The psalms say, "seven times a day do I praise you." We see the Apostles praying at fixed hours as well. (you can find some interesting history on the subject from a quick online search.)

I love the repetition.  There is always thanksgiving, and praise, and request for the Lord's presence.

This morning's "Concluding Prayer of the Church"
Dear God, Almighty and Everlasting Father, you have brought me in safety into this new day: Preserve me with your mighty power, that I may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all I do direct me to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.