Posted tagged ‘praying’

Let Us Pray

October 27, 2014

I grew up bowing my head, eyes closed and hands clasped, to pray.  Over the course of my walk with God, however, I have gradually acknowledged that no part of that posture is necessary.  In history I learned that Stonewall Jackson prayed while riding his horse.  In my own pew, I observed my mother dealing with my youngest siblings before they were old enough to understand that “let’s pray” meant they needed to be quiet.  Neither of these situations allows for closed eyes or clasped hands.  In a war torn countryside, it’s doubtful that General Jackson kept his head bowed either.

I also learned that bowing in respect to Almighty God was more of a heart thing than a posture thing.  Have you parents ever had a child who sat when told, but you could tell they were still standing on the inside?  Have you ever been that child?  Well, sometimes we bow our heads, but our minds and hearts are so full of other things, that we might as well be walking out the door already.  Bowing your head ought really to be an outward sign of an inward reality, but instead, it has become a form, a traditional posture, that can be easily mimicked.  So posture is not the key to prayer.  But that doesn’t answer the original question.  Now jump forward to my late teens.

That’s when I met my Father God.

Sure, I already knew He was my father, but it wasn’t until my teens that I recognized something important.  I began to understand that God loves for His children to come gladly running to meet Him, whether in prayer, or devotions, or in going about His work.  My prayers became much more familiar, like I would talk to my earthly father.  And I began to look upward while praying.

You see, while I picture the Spirit as being inside me, and Jesus walking beside me, God the Father is in Heaven, so when talking to Him, I wanted to look toward Him, trusting like a little girl instead of hanging my head like a condemned sinner.  Yes, I still bow my head in reverence sometimes.  I also bow it in shame at others, but I am learning to bring everything to my Heavenly Father with confidence (Ephesians 3:12; Hebrews 4:16; Romans 8:14-17).

So when I pray, and often while I listen to others pray, I look toward heaven.  I do tend to close my eyes, as that helps cut down on distraction, but looking up helps me remember that I am now a child of God, and He loves to involve His children in His work.  So I encourage you to step back and see if you bow your head simply because that’s what everyone does, or if you do it with a good reason.  I also encourage you that God is a Father who loves you, wants to hear from you, and wants to talk to you.  He desires fellowship, and I’ve always found that’s easiest with people if I look at them.  Why should fellowship with God be so different?  After all, He walked with Adam, didn’t He?

I look forward to the day when we walk with Him on golden streets, and can look Him in the eye.  What joy that uninterrupted fellowship will be!

One Gone, One to Go

August 24, 2011

It’s that time of year again, when school supplies are in every ad and kids are getting in gear for another year of learning.  My mom has been working on school plans as usual, but this year is different for her.

For one thing, she only has one grade to teach, so basically one set of school plans to do (she may have the twins doing slightly different things, but at least until next year they’re doing mostly the same stuff).  For another, she’s been terribly busy getting two college students ready to go out the door.

Yep, two.  My brother 3G left this morning for his Junior year at an engineering school nearly four hours away.  We don’t get to see him as often as we’d like because of the distance, but he does a pretty good job of staying in touch by email, snail mail, and weekly phone calls.  Because he’s going back to the same dorm he was in last year and has already done this twice, he already had a lot of stuff ready and knew pretty much what he needed.

On Friday, Sister is going to school for writing at a college about an hour away from us.  This being her first year, she and Mom have been shopping, shopping, and more shopping to get her everything she needs.  3G has offered some pointers, and if she is missing something, it’s not too big a deal for us to bring it down some weekend, but the attempt has been not to miss anything.  She’ll be close enough that some of us can visit every couple of weekends.  That’ll be nice, ’cause I don’t yet know how I’m going to survive without her.  She’s been the sunshine in the house for years.

Granted, I’m not saying that we always get along.  We have a tendency to get on each others’ nerves every so often.  Okay, honestly, I get on her nerves a lot more often than she gets on mine.  Sometimes even on purpose.  But I love her.  And no, I’m not saying this just because I know she’ll read it, but I’m even going to miss our friction.

Being a tight knit bunch of siblings and tight knit family in general, even one person missing was hard when my brother first went to college.  Now we’ll have two gone.  So we still have three at home; that’s still going to feel like less than half of us!  At least this time we have some kind of inkling what it’s going to be like so we’re almost prepared.  It’s taken a lot of prayer though.

I had a rough start to the week, days before either of them left.  Yesterday and today have been much better (although I did have a couple of tough minutes when 3G said goodbye this morning), and I can feel other people praying for me.

Thank you so much guys, and don’t stop!


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