I run in the way of your commandments, because you enlarge my understanding. (Psalm 119.32)
Mystical prayer transforms us. But sometimes we don’t have the language, guidance, or background to understand our experience. Our faith community and friends may also frown on the Holy Spirit’s activity. A vital experience suppressed.
We can better understand mystical prayer by identifying some of its outcomes:
- God enlarges our hearts so we can retain the grace He gives. This is also called the dilation of the soul.
- Our fear of judgment diminishes.
- We have less fear of trials because we know God infuses meaning into our suffering.
- We have more freedom in serving God and less focus on religious rules (read about Sam).
- The things of the world lose their hold on us. We increase in self-mastery and virtue.
- We gain greater insight about the greatness of God.
After a transforming mystical prayer experience we encounter three obstacles. First, we plateau through complacency. Response: We must learn perseverance and secure these spiritual gains or they slip away. Second, outward opposition distracts and sabotages our progress. This can arise from our family, friends, or faith community. Response: We must maintain current relationships while expanding our “community”. Third, the devil seeks to destroy our progress. And we’ll talk more about this in the next post.