I have been working to install some new software lately and not just any software. I am installing a new operating system that processes information in an entirely new and different way. Fr. Richard Rohr calls it “An Alternative Mind”.

“Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood [God], praying only for knowledge of [God’s] will for us and the power to carry that out.  -Step 11 of AA’s Twelve Steps

Having a self-centered desire of power, control, success, looking for love in all the wrong places, etc., my original operating system is very dualistic. It is the rational mind that is very good at things like science, math, and deciding whether to turn left or right. Unfortunately it is at a complete loss when confronted with the big five of God, death, suffering, love and infinity.

“You must put aside your old self which has been corrupted by following illusory desires. Your mind must be renewed by a spiritual revolution.” -Ephesians 4:22-23

Changing my operating system has not been easy. It takes work but it is not something I accomplish on my own. That would only feed my ego. It is simply surrender and asking God to take over. I have learned that prayer is not about asking God to give us what we want. Prayer is about asking God to help me know what He desires. Prayer (meditation) is largely the work of emptying the mind and filling the heart.

“Be still, and know that I am God.” -Psalm 46:10

My daily prayer for 2020 is:

“Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
 for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all day long.” 
-Psalm 25:5-6


Mark Autterson


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