In December—smack in the middle of Advent—I was hurriedly sweeping my family room floor, frustrated I had to waste time sweeping when there were gifts to be purchased and wrapped, cookies to be decorated, parties to be planned. Suddenly, into my head popped Henri Nouwen’s words about Advent as a season of “active waiting,” which he says is the belief that this moment is the moment—God is doing something right here, right now, and we want to be present to it.
I looked at the fir needles and dust and tiny LEGO pieces I’d collected in a pile with my broom, and I realized I was not wasting time. In this moment, with my broom, God was at work, drawing my attention to Himself. He was helping me to pray.
In the months since, sweeping has become what I call a prayer trigger. A prayer trigger is anything that you see or do on a daily (or many times a day) basis that prompts you to pray.
Photo by Egan Snow, Creative Commons via Flickr.