Prayer(101)

I didn’t understand that some people didn’t know how to pray.  In a prior post I had mentioned an elderly friend of mine named Mrs. Strong that had newly rediscovered her Bible(her religion never endorsed her to read the Bible on her own).  At that same get together we also discussed prayer. After attending a new  Bible Group she also realized that she didn’t know how to pray.   I asked rather incredulously “What do you mean?”  She had always to my knowledge attended church, I didn’t understand.   She said, “when I go to the Bible Study and we sit in a circle, the members take turns praying.  Some are very, very good.  They say prayers for things I never really thought about.”    I was starting to hear her but was still fuzzy.  “Well, how do you pray?, I asked.   “we have a book of prayers that has a  prayer for every occasion.  I’ve always used that.  These people just seem to pray off the top of their head, they make up their prayer.”  I understood then.  I said, “that’s right, they do”.

I need to back up here a little bit.  Mrs. Strong had always been very devoted to her church and family.  She is great. Her famI didn’t understand that some people didn’t know how to pray. In a prior post I had mentioned an elderly friend of mine named Mrs. Strong that had newly rediscovered her Bible(her religion never endorsed her to read the Bible on her own). At that same get together we also discussed prayer. After attending a new Bible Group she also realized that she didn’t know how to pray. I asked rather incredulously “What do you mean?” She had always to my knowledge attended church, I didn’t understand. She said, “when I go to the Bible Study and we sit in a circle, the members take turns praying. Some are very, very good. They say prayers for things I never really thought about.” I was starting to hear her but was still fuzzy. “Well, how do you pray?, I asked. “we have a book of prayers that has a prayer for every occasion. I’ve always used that. These people just seem to pray off the top of their head, they make up their prayer.” I understood then. I said,”‘that’s right, they do”.ily is great. Her life was great. In essence she had always done what she was TOLD TO DO.  She was also from a different generation and a rural background.  Again this is not wrong because again she has raised a great family, served her community, cared for others and wonderfully fulfilled her faith.  I believe that she did pray on her own but  mostly she recited hers prayers.

I on the other hand I found things differently. When I was a boy and a teenager I would read the Bible in Church, during church service.  This always made my Mother mad.  “Why don’t you read it at home?” she would say.  “because I’m to busy playing baseball,” I answered.  “Then why do you read it in church?” she countered. I gave her three reasons why I read the Bible in church. “One, I’m bored with what the minister is saying. Two, It’s the only book in the church pew. Three, I find Jesus words much more interesting than what the preacher is saying.”  After that she didn’t bother me and she didn’t like it but she did understand. I guess I always read and prayed on my own.

It’s about direct communion.   Back to Mrs. Strong.  I told her it may look difficult but she could pray any way she wanted to.   “The greatest thing to remember about prayer is to pray sincerely.  That’s what these people are doing”,   she nodded her head.   “It sounds like you’ve always prayed for reasons; a birth, a death, a wedding or a tragedy.” If we really think about our greatest prayers, they were done with our deepest conviction and spontaneity.   I relayed to her the story of one Minster’s greatest prayer.  He said that one time while he was getting water from the well his foot became entangled by the rope and he fell into the well. Hanging upside down in the darkness of that well “I never prayed so sincerely in my life as at that time, I was eventually heard and found.” (<Unremembered Source)  With that I want to say that we can pray for a reason but that we can also pray BECAUSE WE CAN!  Every thought is in fact a prayer.

Dear Father, help me find the words….

                                                             – Someone, Somewhere

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4 Responses to “Prayer(101)”

  1. Christina Cronk Says:

    “Every thought is in fact a prayer.” I love this. It doesn’t matter what words we use, or if we use words at all… what matters most is that we are sincere. Excellent post.

  2. informationforager Says:

    Thanks again. I referred your blog to another woman, hope she sees your work. Again keep it going. One of the things that I like about writing my blog is that “I think about it. I type, I retype, take my time and let my subconscious percolate” It’s fun actually. Sometimes the inspiration happens while I’m in my car.

    • Christina Cronk Says:

      It is the same way for me as well. I recently purchased a little hand recorder so that, when inspiration speaks to me where jotting down notes is not an option – such as while driving, hiking, etc – the stream of thought will not be lost. It travels around with me in my purse. It’s main purpose is for my blog, but I have also used it to record my cats purring so I can feel closer to them whilst traveling far away…

  3. Pat Cegan Says:

    How glad I am that you visited my blod today so that it led me to yours! I love what I am reading here. My prayers are more like conversations, casual, constant with plenty of time for listening. I also like to meditate which is when I am quiet and still and let God do the talking! All of us have that inner voice that guides us if only we would pay attention. Thanks for your blog, it is a point of light for many who are seeking these days. hugs, pat

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