Vigilance: Part V
Improve conscious contact with God
Prayer and meditation is not just an attitude, but also a practice. Did you know that you are constantly praying? “Praying to whom?” you may ask. Your mind is in conversation with someone at all times; you talk to your ‘self’ constantly. Self talk is mostly unconscious, and if not practiced on a conscious level can be quite destructive and limiting.
Prayer can be transformed from merely talking to yourself to talking to your higher ‘self’ – your Higher Power! Effective prayer is something that you must practice if you are to improve your conscious contact with God, your Higher Power.
Talking to God is a conscious exercise. There are, basically, two things you can engage in when praying: You can consciously give gratitude for that which you are thankful; you can make conscious petition for things that you need. ‘Asking’ and ‘giving thanks’ are both very important items that need to be part of your dialogue with God.
And yes, it is a dialogue; God also must speak. But not many of us know how to listen. Even when we’re engaged in a conversation and the other person is talking, we’re not really listening. We’re thinking about what we’re going to say next! Listening is hard to do because we don’t practice it.
Listening is part of meditation. I had difficulty (and still do) trying to meditate because of the mind chatter – the noise and racket that persist when I first begin. But with practice the mind does quiet down and listening gets easier. There is a still, small voice that I can hear if I remain silent and tranquil, allowing my mind to settle down.
There are very practical ways that you can listen to God. After a period of quiet listening, you can begin to write down (in a journal) the impressions that come to you. And you can record what comes to you in the form of an affirmation. Write these truths down for they are your truth.
Prayer and meditation is a practice; and with practice you can improve your conscious contact with your Higher Power. Regularly engaging in quiet, physical relaxation and maintaining emotional calm is necessary to sustain proper conscious contact with your Higher Power.