I will be getting to the two issues I mentioned . . . asap. They will take a little time to lay, which I'm short of at the moment. But one thing I am strongly impressed to reiterate in the meantime is the necessity of constant prayer. "Vain repetitions" are one thing. That is not what prayer is about. Where other so-called "spiritual paths" advise meditation (the emptying of the mind so that the "divine" can enter and transform) or the repetitious changing of mantras . . . Christian prayer is means of direct interaction with the one and only true and living God. Relationship with God through prayer is the way of the Christian disciple. And in these times, where it seems to me that the demonic is so pervasive and active, constant prayer is vital for protection and for calling upon God and (and thus His angelic servants) to be daily engaged with you in the spiritual battle that is raging all around.
It is said and true that the status of one's spiritual life can be gauged by one's prayer life. It is astounding that we have such a powerful, merciful avenue of divine contact, guidance and protection available . . . and yet we barely, if ever, utilize it in any meaningful way!
When you love someone you are thinking of them always; you are thinking of new ways to creatively laud and connect with them. You shower them with affection, energy and attention. Do we love God so? Or are we pouring energy, attention and care into a thousand other things and beings?
What a mighty, profound caring grace the Lord has provided us--to be able to speak with Him intimately, as to a dear friend and Father . . . through prayer. . . !