What is troubling and exciting about spirituality is that in it, we are exploring God. And God is the huge unknown and unknowable. We can chicken out and say that we would rather pray to Him, not explore Him. God is a bit scary for us. We rejoice in His love, but we can still want to think of Him as distant. But like it or not, He is not distant; He is close. And He wants to be explored by His people.
When we pray, we tend to think that it is something that we are doing to touch God. That way of thinking keeps God at a safe distance. But there is another way to think of prayer. What if we thought of prayer as something that God does inside us. What if we just give God the space and the time in our head and in our heart, and God does the praying. We say we do it, but it is really God praying inside us. And how can this happen? I do not know. I do not understand God. But I know that the “God praying in us” phenomenon is not rare.
As a priest, I have known many men and women in whom God prays. I suspect this could happen with all of us, if we are consistently giving God the time and the space inside us. It is the easiest way to pray; we give the space, God does the job. And he is right inside us.
If your ambition is to hold this scary God at a distance, you are going to lose eventually. This God wants us close.
Fr. James O'Leary