Praying in the Cracks

Not that long ago, the idea of spending time alone with God in silence was not even on my radar. But God knew how much I needed this and invited me to “pray in the cracks.” This post was originally published in 2013. I hope you enjoy reading it.

joannagoddard.blogspot.comI went to my first spiritual director a dozen years ago while I was studying at Regent College.

After a few sessions my director said gently, “You have a lot of noisy, discouraging tapes playing in your head. I can’t compete with them.”

I swallowed hard. “What can I do?”

“Do you pray?” she asked.

“Yes. Sometimes. Not as much as I’d like.”

“How about praying in the cracks?”

“The what?”

“The cracks. The spaces that naturally occur in your day as you walk from one class to another, as you stand in line at the grocery store, or even as you wait for an elevator.  In those spare moments, instead of thinking about what you need to do next or trying to solve problems, just allow God to love you.”

“That’s it?”

“Yes. Do you think you can do that?”

“Sure,” I said skeptically.

“Trust me. If you pray in the cracks, it will change your life.”

As I walked from her office to the bus stop, I decided to try it. I began to pray and all kinds of thoughts flooded into my mind: things I should pray for, things I should do. Then I looked down at a crack in the sidewalk and stopped. Just allow God to love you, she had said.

jesusneedsnewpr.netLeaves—golden and red—caught my eye. Dry brown ones crunched under foot. I listened to the birds and the laughter in the distance, and I thought about being God’s beloved child.

After that, whenever I found myself waiting for anything (and remembered to pray), I quieted my heart and imagined God saying to me, “You are my beloved child, with you I am well pleased.”

In those cracks God deposited seeds of Christ’s kingdom. Before long I found myself relaxing in the shade of a mustard tree, with more freedom to pray and enjoy God’s presence.

A dozen years later I still pray in the cracks. And those old tapes? They’re not as loud as they used to be.

The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.
–Zephaniah 3:17 (NKJV)

∗ ∗ ∗

Love Mischief for the World

LA Evans-2014

Lesley-Anne Evans is the Creative Curator at Metro Community where she works with street people in Kelowna, B.C.. One of her initiatives is a blog Holding Out Hope, which gives them a voice. She quotes Phillip Stanhope who said that many people would “rather you heard their story than granted their request.” Lesley-Anne says, “We are all created in the image of God, and therefore creative. I love to coming alongside others as they discover, engage, contribute and celebrate their creative gifts.” Lesley-Anne says what’s most meaningful to her is being present and listening. Through this, she has begun to experience the rawness of the street community and the gift of holding space without judgement.

What love mischief are you and God doing to care for the earth?
Let me know and I will include it in an upcoming post.

Credits and References:
Photo from The Bean and Bear
Painting by Christian Asuh
Photo of Lesley-Anne Evans used with permission.
© Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim, 2016.
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without permission from Esther Hizsa is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided there is a link to the original content and credit is given as follows: © Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016.

About Esther Hizsa

Esther is a spiritual director and writer. She lives in Burnaby with her husband, Fred, and they have two grown children and two grandchildren.
This entry was posted in Homelessness, Popular Posts, Prayer, Spiritual Direction, Stories and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Praying in the Cracks

  1. Thanks for this, Esther. I love that name for this practice—”praying in the cracks.” And it’s a great reminder to do it!
    I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but I think it’s also quite lovely that you posted the piece about Lesley-Anne on her birthday 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Esther Hizsa says:

    I didn’t know it was her birthday. That is cool!


  3. Pingback: Let God Love You | An Everyday Pilgrim

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