Stop, look, then go

By Dave Henning / July 18, 2013

“Prime is that hour of the day when we pray not to get it over with, but to make everything a prayer.”- David Steindl-Rast

Prime, Leighton Ford states in Chapter 4 (“Prime Time: Our Root System”) of The Attentive Life, denotes the hour of deliberate beginning of the day.  We are reminded that everything we do should begin thoughtfully and with whole-hearted attentiveness.  David Steindl-Rast puts it this way: “During Prime, we commit ourselves to do everything today in the same way that we teach children to cross a street: stop, look, then go.”

Like young Samuel in the Bible, this is the time to respond to God’s voice calling us, seeking to discern and follow our vocation.  Taking time to make sure our root system is in place is a prerequisite to that response.  The author recalls a walk in the North Carolina mountains, where he noticed 2 hardwood trees standing on top of a huge boulder.  Upon closer inspection, he determined that the twin root systems snaked down and around the rock, finding their way to the ground through a cleft in the rock.  To Leighton, the tree roots illustrate the paramount question at the hour of Prime:

“What is the root system of my life?  Is it deep and wide and long and strong enough to withstand the pressures of each day?”

Today’s question: How would you respond to Leighton Ford’s question about your root system?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “The contemplative life”

About the author

Dave Henning

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