When we pray, we seek the Spirit. That is the essence of prayer. Of course, it is excellent advice to be careful what you ask for because you just might get it. Jesus promises, “if you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more so will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask.” The gift of the Spirit is the answer to our prayers, for it brings us peace where we need it, serenity for what requires our courageous engagement, courage and strength to change what needs changing and a loving wisdom for discerning where we are called to engage and where we are called to step back.
OK. So now I’m curious in a practical sort of way. How do we seek the Spirit? How do we know when what we feel is, in fact, the presence of the Spirit and not just, oh, say, the spirits I just consumed (one glass of red wine, in case you’re counting) or the meatballs, or anger left over from some recent unpleasantness, or sadness at a loss? How do we move with the Spirit when we’re reasonably sure that it is the Spirit leading us? What steps to you take to pray? Are there words or phrases or thoughts that you find helpful? Are there actions? Are there places? Times of day? Situations? Does circling a fire and banging drums help? Just curious, that’s all.