Please see Mary Graves’ meditation this week:
Thinking about the two words “play and pray” I am struck by the fact that there is only one letter in each of them that is different, and this got me thinking that maybe there is more of a connection between play and pray than I had previously imagined. Do we miss out on something if we never consider play as part of our prayers?
As children we delighted in play, it was spontaneous and joyful. How many of you remember playing out until dusk, your parents calling you home and you reluctant to stop the fun of the game you were playing. As a teacher of young children, parents often told me that when they asked their child what they had done that day at school, the answer was often ‘play.’
All the above is not an attempt to trivialise prayer in any way or to deny the worth of prayer nor dishonour God. Instead, thinking of prayer as playful encourages us to take ourselves lightly and frees us to respond to God with honesty and curious wonder. Taking a playful approach develops in us a confident trust so that we can unselfconsciously bring our whole selves to God, and nothing needs to be excluded.
Like a child at play, I believe that to pray in the spirit of play can nurture our willingness to have a go, trust the process and see what happens, in other words to give ourselves whole-heartedly to God; our Heavenly playmate.
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing” (George Bernard Shaw).
Maybe the same can be said for praying?
With every good wish and praying all will be safe at play in the holidays
Fr Reginald and Fr Bryan