root prayers
root prayers

root prayers

Today, we’re going to engage in what I refer to as “root prayers.” Root prayers begin with a piece of scripture or a short prayer. Every time it is repeated, however, a word or two is removed. By doing so, the scripture or prayer may take on a new meaning until you truly come to the root or essence by meditating on one or two words.

There is no right or wrong way to do this, no correct format of how to choose which words are pared away. I find that if I allow myself to listen to the Divine within, then the words fall away on their own until I’m left with the message the Spirit is sharing with me.

This morning during my prayer time, the phrase “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace” settled in my soul. As I meditated on this line from the prayer by St. Francis of Assisi, I noticed that the message began to unfold. It was clear that the Holy Spirit was answering a question I had been asking all weekend, and it came down to one word that will guide me for the next few days.

Today, let’s practice with Psalm 46:10. This will give you an opportunity to experience the process. We’ll begin in silence and take some deep breaths, then I will lead the prayer.

Psalm 46:10
Be still and know that I am God. PAUSE
Be still and know that I am. PAUSE
Be still and know. PAUSE
Be still. PAUSE

Now take a moment, and let the same piece of scripture settle into your soul. Here these words then listen to what the Holy Spirit may be moving in you.

Psalm 46:10
Be still and know that I am God.


What did you hear? How did you connect with the Beloved through this prayer practice?

The gift of root prayers is their simplicity and their guidance in helping us center with God. You can use this practice anywhere at any time. I encourage you to try this with scripture or prayers that are meaningful to you, or just be with God and see what phrase comes to mind then through one word, binds you to the Holy Spirit.

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