Desert Wisdom: “Easting”

After dealing with the matter of praying “in your room in secret,” Bunge writes a comparatively long section on the early-Christian practice of facing East when praying.  For those of us who have grown up in a more free-church tradition, this section provides opportunities to learn some new things.

First of all, it is facing toward the sunrise, and that is a deep symbol of what our prayer should be—a rising of the soul to meet God and be influenced by Him.  Prayer is an “elevating” means of grace.  A number of times in scripture we find the phrase “incline your heart to the Lord.”  Prayer of this kind is a disposition of the heart toward the Light.

Turning to the East, Christians are saying, “Sun of God, arise in my soul, and shed Your Light into every part of my being.”

About Steve Harper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 42 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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