Wednesday, January 10, 2018

"Drive forth, O Lord, all darksome things"

Image: St. Peter's Church, Toronto
This is why we need poetry in our lives. Isn't that one of the best lines you've ever read? It comes from the opening hymn from Morning Prayer (Liturgy of the Hours). If you do not pray the LOTH, you should seriously consider it, because it's the next most legit thing to attending daily Mass. (Yes, it's even "better" than the daily rosary, and that is saying a LOT.) If you don't know what it is, or where to begin, read this book. Available in ebook format, so you can start within the next 10 minutes if you want. I can't overstate how important this form of prayer is in my life.

We all have suffering and darkness in our lives, and we want God to take it away. Sometimes, the only prayer we can muster is, "God, help me; I can't deal with this crap."  But if we're going to pray that prayer, we might as well use beautiful language--not because God needs to hear it (he knows all the words, even the bad ones), but because we do.  God is everything that is true, good and beautiful. And good Art is the same thing. True Art leads us to God.

The LOTH is based on the Psalms, which contain some of the most beautiful words in the Bible.

The Bible also has a lot of cool metaphors. This one came from the Reading from Midmorning Prayer today: (1 Peter 1:13-14): "Gird the loins of your understanding..." Ha, I love that! In other words, 'Get it together, man!' Know what you believe; know why you believe it, and be ready to explain/defend it when asked/challenged.

By the way, I don't usually pray so many of the hours, so don't think I'm some kind of saint. In fact I was kind of cheating and listening to the LOTH audio while I tidied my bedroom this morning. It had become rather messy over the holidays. (You know it's bad when you get all the way through the podcasts of Morning Prayer, Office of Readings AND Midmorning Prayer, and you only cleaned half the room.) Disorganization, laziness and clutter: just a few more those darksome things that need to be driven forth from my life. Pray for me; I'll pray for you.


  1. May I share this on my (badly neglected) blog and a LOTH facebook group?

  2. Yes, please and thank you! I would be honoured. Any readers you can send this way would be greatly appreciated!!

    1. Hello, Mrs. Pinkerton, I just found your blog via Coffee and Canticles. Chalk up one more reader sent your way. Blessings, Audrey

    2. Hello, Audrey, and welcome! Thanks for commenting. :)

  3. Hi Mrs Pinkerton! I too come from Coffee and Canticles. I enjoyed this post. Thanks! Alexis

  4. Make that another wanderer to your site from Coffee and Canticles. A compadre who recognizes the beauty of praying the Liturgy of the Hours ... it doesn't get any better than that! Thanks! RM

  5. Having trouble accessing the link in your post to the e-book on the Liturgy of the Hours. Could you check the link and post the site address? Thanks! RM