Pray first. It sounds simple, but it was not simple to get there.

As we asked questions we seemed to find only more questions. How do we reach people? How do we overcome our busy schedules? How do we overcome boredom? What do we do about that whole concept of “spiritual but not religious?” How do we get rid of jargon? How do we free people from the need for expertise or mastery? How do we break out of the box?

One of our number suggested that if we are about prayer and practice, maybe we should pray. I don’t remember if words were spoken or if we were silent. At the end of it, John remembered a time when he had a screen saver that simply said, “pray first.” He even had a sticky note for a while on his car’s dashboard to remind him to pray.

What if it were that simple.

Pray first.

Can we do that much? Can we remind ourselves to pray? We know that prayer is not about the mastery of a technique. St. Benedict reminds us that, “always we begin again.” We always return to prayer as beginners.

The rest is what can come next. This website will have many resources to go deeper. There is also much to be gained by praying with others in community. We will offer things to buy that you can hold in your hand or keep in view to remind you – that is all that they are for. Pray first.

Enter into the presence of God. Use words or use no words. Speak what is on your heart, or simply listen. Maybe we can give up controlling the world. Maybe we can set aside our worry, or at least hold it less firmly.

If we can stop and pray, even if only for some few moments – it can transform our lives. It can transform our relationships. It can transform our world.

Pray first.

Greg Welin

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