Saturday, January 26, 2008

Some people say they don't know how to pray.

If they pray prayers written by others they wonder if God hears them.

Or, if the written prayer is beautiful, will the prayer be able to speak so well when she prays her own words. Does God require prayers to be in formal language?

What do you do if you aren't sure your prayer is o.k. enough to pray?

Is God listening to prayer regardless of style?

How do you pray when you don't feel like praying and, in fact, would like to give God a punch in the celestial nose?

You may have the answers to these questions but for those new to prayer, these questions are great mysteries.

St. Casserole


Songbird said...

These are such great questions. As a person churched all my life, I can't remember not knowing about prayer. You are making me think.

zorra said...

There are times when brandishing a fist toward the celestial nose is the most honest prayer of all.

I haven't been struck down yet.

Sue said...

I did not see the inside of a church until I was sixteen years old. I had no idea what prayer was. Sometimes I think I still have no clue.

I wonder if prayer is whatever we need God to hear, which is pretty much everything, including our rants and our whimpers.

These are good questions.

mibi52 said...

An excerpt from my sermon for tomorrow:

"The Art of Figuring It Out may start in silence – listening for God’s voice. Prayer is not always about talking – much of the time, it’s about listening. Listening is an art, a learned art. Our society militates against silence, against listening. We’re supposed to find our voice, use our voice, make ourselves heard. We’re not supposed to hide our light under a bushel basket, Silence is deafening. Silence = death. Silence is something to be broken. And yet silence may be our best chance to figure out what God wants us to do."

The good news is that God speaks all the languages, and so can hear prayer whether it's words or thoughts or whacking a log with an axe because one is so angry. Thank goodness...and thank God for the mystery. You've got it in one.

hip2B said...

I was very angry with God for a while but someone smart told me that even being angry with God acknowledges his existence. I believe rant can be prayer.

Crimson Rambler said...

This is why I LOVE the Psalms..."You mean we're allowed to say THAT?" i.e. "everything hurts and my neighbours are snickering." SUCH a liberation, it was.

RevHRod said...

We all need to be told at least a few times that lamenting is a practice with great history. And as for the "quality" of our prayers... listen to those of little kids. Honest, direct, forthight and very, very to the point. Oh if we only could remember to pray like that some times.

Gracebythesea said...

Remember Cass our old friend Calvin said prayer is most honest when we crying out to and against God...

God's big enough to handle our punches and the anger behind it... and our worries and fears that our prayers (and our persons) are not 'enough'.

But you are enough, perfectly enough!
In fact some of us would even're a handfull!

Princess of Everything (and then some) said...

but am I heard? Does God remember me?