Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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What are your thoughts on meditation? More specifically, is it possible to use it as a tool to strengthen my relationship with Christ? Over the past few months I have experimented with keeping a diary to help me meditate. When I do this, I generally write in a stream of consciousness. I have found that it is very calming to write in my diary especially when I am stressed. I have also found that it is a lot easier to write in my diary than it is to pray. Since I find it easier to write than to pray, I am hoping there is a way I can use meditation and my diary to build my relationship with God.

Meditation, reflection, and writing can be effective ways to reduce stress, but cannot replace praying and reading the Holy Bible. Prayer transformed the lives of many into saints. Prayer is necessary, not a suggestion. Thus, the Church wisely gave us the Prayers of the Hours to teach us the connection between prayer, worship, and praise. Your mind, your heart, and all your senses should feel your prayers. Therefore, add to prayer, but do not take away from it.

"Let my prayer be set before You as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice."(Psalm 141:2)

"And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel’s hand." (Revelation 8:4)

"Virtues are formed by prayer. Prayer preserves temperance. Prayer suppresses anger. Prayer prevents emotions of pride and envy. Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit, and raises man to Heaven."(St. Ephraem)

“Prayer is a feeling of being in the presence of God. It is a partnership with the Holy Spirit and unity with God.” (Pope Shenouda III)

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