I was listening to my favorite podcast, Clerically Speaking, yesterday when they made an interesting point about prayer. Prayer is not my strongest suit, to say the least.
Pagan prayer is where you pray and expect results. That is, if I say this incantation, God will love me or I'll get some benefit. Or, perhaps, if I sacrifice this chicken, my team will win the big game.
If the chicken sacrifices me, there's no telling what might happen.
In any case, they discussed contemplative prayer which is where you exist in the moment and let the moment wash over you as you contemplate and listen for what God has to say to you. I did this the other day in Adoration. Mother kitteh is doing quite poorly and I was exhausted and stressed. I was told to just love.
Leaving my mom yesterday, I tried contemplative prayer as I drove and I thought about the love and peace I had brought her by setting up some additional care. I was on my way to do some shopping, so I vowed to try and bring some smiles to the clerks and other folks at the stores. I think I managed to do it.
It happened because I opened myself up to what God wanted of me in the moment, not because I performed a certain rite and said certain words. I think those have their place, but not the same as the one they hold in a pagan world.
Does that make sense?