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I am God's wheat ground fine by the lion's teeth to be made purest bread for Christ.

—Ignatius of Antioch, Second century

This morning, my soul searched in prayer more than I have in some time. Not the struggling, painful searching that often must be the path on this side of heaven, but the contemplative wonder that recognizes at once how far beyond He is and how very near He has drawn to us and has drawn us to Him, that recognizes His Spirit upholds mine and that I never pray alone. My prayers themselves are weak vessels— fractured, fragmented, forgetful things. Yet He is at work.

Decided to leave home early and make a detour to the Chapel of St. Ignatius before work. It's been a long time, only once since the Year of Hell. The space itself is beautiful, inspiring, sacred. I spent a number of mornings there while I was at Seattle University, and many nighttime walks led me inside its walls. Today I had some new questions, yet unformed, and I didn't need answers, only to ask. It was time to return.

Not surprisingly in hindsight, I crossed the path of an old colleague during my time in the chapel, who invited me to join in their regular morning prayer service. Perhaps this will become a part of my routine.

Much of my private prayer time was spent here, always my favorite room within the chapel. The smell of beeswax sets it apart somehow; the prayers etched in its walls are simple and right. For me, it is a place of intimate presence. It was good to return.


Prayer freaks me out. The idea that I can speak directly to God--weak, vacillating, limited and misguided and sinful as I am.... and He listens to me. Sometimes the incredible discrepancy between how fabulous he is and how un-fabulous I am intimidates me beyond words. I continue to pray, because I'm supposed to, and because in some mysterious fashion my words MEAN something to him... it's beyond comprehension. But sometimes I wish it made more sense. I used to be less self-conscious in my prayers, but also (I think) less aware of WHO I was talking to.

you live in seattle????

hey, i saw that you said "seattle university" I live 45 miles south east of Seattle. crazy. what school do you go to? Seattle U? email me at aliciahoward770@cs.com