When was the last time you tried something for the first time?
I saw instructions in a craft newsletter for prayer beads. I'd never used prayer beads and really didn't have a clue, but I could thread a needle and that was a start. Maybe, just maybe, this was a nudge in a prayerful direction.
I found a too-short string of green beads from a friend, onyx beads that had belonged to my mother, scissors, and string. I strung 6 onyx beads, a brass spacer, a green bead, and then another spacer and then repeated the process several times.
Finished, I took my creation to the living room sofa. Would this work? Would it be enough to give me something to focus on? Bead by bead, I started out with short prayers of praise. Then I worked my way through the church prayer list. I still had two groups of beads to go. Line by line, bead by bead, I prayed Saint Francis's Prayer.
When I was done, I had been praying for 15 minutes. Fifteen minutes isn't much, but it is about 13 minutes longer than I usually manage at home on a busy day. I felt more relaxed and more centered than usual too.
It is restful to pray with the beads, and they are a daily reminder to sit and spend some time in quiet prayer.
Bead by bead.
- Sue Bradford Edwards