Tuesday, January 29, 2008

what do I say when I pray?

I pray. I have a short list of people that I pray for every day, for them to encounter God and know his goodness and be the people they are meant to be. What I pray for them changes every day, but it is always pretty much toward those goals. I often ask God what he is doing in situations and request his direction in decisions. I ask him to show me the truth about certain things. I pray for people as I encounter needy situations during my day. Sometimes I am just grateful for something and tell God how cool I think it is. Often, these days, I remind my soul and again reaffirm my trust in God regarding timing and major changes and events that are upcoming.

Some days I listen to the words that come out of my mouth, or the thoughts that whirl around in my head when I am talking to God and I realise it is all sounding very imperative. God, MAKE me a better leader. God, HEAL that person. God, BRING the right people across my path. God, COME and CHANGE us. God, GIVE us our daily needs. God, HELP me love in a better way. God, MAKE me whole. Now I realise there is nothing wrong with asking God for stuff, in fact Jesus modeled that very thing in parts of his teaching on prayer, also known as the Lord's prayer. But some days I think that someone who was listening in might think I am talking to am employee, handing out assignments. God does not work for me. I would say that I spend my days trying to fit myself into His grand masterpiece, but is it reflective in my language?

Some of my most profound moments of communion with the Creator and Lover of life have been times when words failed me: a silence of rest and comfort, a groaning of agony for some one's pain, a fistful of tears when I am overwhelmed, an awakening of my senses to the vibrancy of supernatural energy at work in and around me. It is not always necessary for words. I know I pray too much with words, thinking that the utterance in and of itself carries some mystical power to bend God's will to my pleas. He is already bending low to me, delighting to hear and see and taste and smell and feel the humanity, unique and beautiful, that he fashioned in me. May I bend my heart, my head, my hands, my smile, my mood, my work, my sighs, my laughter, my joy, my body, my life towards him every day. This is prayer.

This is a photo of my phone, gift from the most bestest husband on the planet, on which I talk to the humans in my world. The banana just wanted to be in the picture.

1 comment:

steven hamilton said...

mmm; i agree...its in those moments when words fail that communication is the best with the One so distant yet utterly close...