In his essay “The Wounded Word,” French philosopher-poet Jean-Louis Chrétien describes prayer as situated in “an act of presence to the invisible.” People who pray are disclosed to God and, secondarily, themselves, illuminated with a “light from elsewhere.” I was six when I first experienced this in its full measure.
“It troubles me,” our teacher said, “that lots of you said “ooh” and “wow” when the football players were getting tackled in the first part of the video, but no-one said anything when the football player told us about what Jesus had done for him during the second part of the video.”
We squirmed in the benches. The grass outside was positively shining; a second teacher blocked the door to keep us from running out to play in it. Fans spun overhead, not dissipating the heat so much as mixing us into it.
Finally we were released. My peers ran and played.
I, on the other hand, received a call from the Lord. It didn’t come down from the sky with thunder. Instead, I remember a quietly emerging sense of destiny. When our keepers called for us to reconvene in the classroom, I wandered towards a path my father had shown me earlier. It led into the woods. [Read more...]