The Daily Prayer
SATURDAY, January 11, 2020
Brother Lawrence (1611—1691)
Born Nicholas Herman in Lorraine, France, Brother Lawrence received little formal education and, as a young man, served briefly in the army. One day, he had an experience that set the course of his life in a new direction. Gazing at a barren tree in winter, Lawrence saw for the first time the majesty of God’s grace and the constancy of God’s providence. He imagined himself like the tree, waiting for the life that God would inevitably bring in season. Shortly after this experience, he became a lay brother in the Carmelite monastery in Paris. There he worked in the kitchen and, in the repetition of his daily chores, found a way to integrate spirituality and work, which he called the “practice of the presence of God.” By learning to perform his daily, mundane tasks for the sake of God, Brother Lawrence turned every moment into an opportunity for prayer.
Brother Lawrence wrote, “Men invent means and methods of coming at God’s love, they learn rules and set up devices to remind them of that love, and it seems like a world of trouble to bring oneself into the consciousness of God’s presence. Yet it might be so simple. Is it not quicker and easier just to do our common business wholly for the love of him?”
Though you are worthy of trumpets and the song of angels, you graciously receive our daily prayers of whispered words and mundane habits. Enable us, Lord, to love you with all that we are and in all that we do. Teach us how we might truly pray without ceasing. Amen.