So daily dying to the way of self, so daily living to your way of love, we walk the road, Lord Jesus, that you trod, knowing ourselves baptized into your death: so we are dead and live with you in God. (Thomas H. Cain, from The Hymnal 1982)
Then he went a short distance farther and fell to the ground. He prayed that, if possible, he might be spared the time of suffering. He said, “Abba, Father, for you all things are possible. Take this cup of suffering away from me. However—not what I want but what you want.” (Mark 14:35-36; context)
This Lent, we are exploring our faith by running through the alphabet. Today, “K” is for kneeling. To be honest, I picked “kneeling” because I couldn’t think of any other good “K” words (and I used “kingdom” last year”). But then I thought more about it and realized that “kneeling” is a perfectly good word to use in a discussion about following Jesus Christ, especially during Lent.
Kneeling is something we do with our bodies. We bend the knee. We plant it on the ground. This is the position of the vassal before his lord. It is also the position of a parent tying a child’s shoe. And it is a position we sometimes assume when we pray. Think about the first two images in light of prayer.
The first shows displays fealty, the loyalty of a less powerful person to a more powerful person. When we kneel in prayer, we use our bodies to show that we understand our proper relationship to God, who is our sovereign, the one to whom we owe our allegiance.
The second displays service, the loving act of one giving of oneself to another. When we kneel in prayer, we use our bodies to show that our prayer is one way in which we serve God. Our prayer opens us up to God working in our lives. The act of kneeling shows that we are willing to get down in the dirt for God’s sake.
When we kneel, we show our loyalty and our willingness to serve. We don’t kneel in order to show off, but in order to remind ourselves of our right relationship with God.
Dear God, when I kneel before you in prayer you are always ready to listen. Help me to be as open to listening to you in return and to living my life as if I am always kneeling in your service. In Jesus Christ’s name I pray. Amen.
I leave this moment with you, God, thankful that you continue to shine your light in my heart and mind, that I may continue to know you better through every way that you choose to reveal yourself.
One thought on ““K” is for Kneeling (March 7, 2012)”
An attitude of of loyalty and willingness to serve…I need to keep that in mind when I fail to take the bodily posture that would help me remember why I pray.
Thank you for sending this visual this morning.