fasting or feasting?
“The more deeply we grow into the psalms and the more often we pray them as our own,
the more simple and rich will our prayer become.”
― Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Today begins for Orthodox Christians our preparations toward the Nativity and it is such a gratitude that psalter prayer groups begin today in countless Orthodox Churches and social media groups. Especially for moms, between this weekend and Nativity most everything becomes a blur. If you have kids there are lots of Christmas concerts and pageants and festivities that all require their share of running around and planning and time. Each one of them is a joy – but if we’re honest, most people find that need for balance, focus and silence catches up with them because there is so much to do and it all just blends together.
Those holiday hectivities (I just made that word up) is one reason I am so fortunate that for the past many many years I have been with a local Psalter Prayer group formed by an extraordinary group of prayerful women – I’ve learned so much from them.
One thing in particular I have learned is that the whole body of us is so much greater than the sum of our persons. That is because when we start praying the Kathismas on the 15th the entire psalter along with our individual intentions and commemorations will be offered daily. That is a mighty thing.
Praying a Kathisma is about twenty minutes that often passes so quickly, one feels they have barely begun.
What else I have learned from these prayer warriors is that on those days when I fail in my prayers I know that I have been born on the prayers of others.
It’s the beginning of the Nativity Fast, most of us are having some combination of veggies and beans for the next forty days, and yet feasting on the Psalms we lack nothing. May this Nativity Season be blessed and bountiful for you and for all of us!