Olet täällä

Learning to listen

You need to study hard to have your prayers answered, and for this the Orthodox Church offers excellent possibilities.

The old Jewish truism about prayer is that real prayer is a matter of placing ourselves before someone who is greater than us. When we come before God it is as if we were on an ocean with waves that cleanse us, hold us up and carry us with them.

Although each of us prays to God and listens to Him in our own way, a certain amount of experience can be of help.

For Orthodox Christians a vast archive of experience in prayer and belief can be found in the Church itself, where the hundreds of prayers that are read provide an excellent basis for learning to listen.

The opposite of prayer is not silence but a void.

God’s presence is described in the Bible as “The Word of God”. That “word” is God speaking to people, through God the Father or through the Son whom He sent into the world.

God is never silent; it is just that it is sometimes hard for us to listen to Him. A void is one manifestation of the work of sin. Words and languages are God’s messages.

The life of prayer of the Orthodox Church is a process of practicing in order to develop a gradually improving faculty for listening to God.

At the same time God is constantly seeking out new ways of speaking to us and comforting us.

And what is best of all, communication between God and man is not bound by time.

God’s eternity is something that is always new, often surprisingly so.

© Suomen ortodoksisen arkkipiispan kanslia, Liisankatu 29 A 8, 00170 Helsinki, puh. 020 6100 240, helsingin.hiippakunta@ort.fi