See the sky and hills!

See the sky and hills!
In Quiet Moments Here

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A Simple Prayer

In the past few months, we have somehow come across a prayer book entitled Grace Before Meals.  The most remarkable part about it, to us, is that it was published 100 years ago, in 1911.  Growing up in a family and a church where we usually practiced the habit of spontaneous prayers, rather than those that were read or memorized, the book didn't at first have an appeal to me.  In celebration of that 100-year book birthday, however, we decided to give it a try, and found it to be amazing in its relevancy to times of today, its beauty in the the Old King James language, and its reminders of how even a simple grace before meals can end up being not simple.  For example, "Wherein we have failed to please Thee, O God, do Thou grant Thy pardon."  These words would not ordinarily be inserted into my "thank-you" before eating a meal, but I'm grateful to be reminded of their importance.

On the other end of the prayer spectrum, I was reminded of a prayer that my friend Hallie, in her blog, said she has hanging on the wall of her home; it is in modern language, and centered on one theme.  "Let me live in such a way that those who know me but don't know God will come to know God because they know me."  These words are hard to get around, difficult to forget.

From the profound to the simple, from the simple to the profound, occasions for prayer are all around us, and prayer is not difficult. Thinking of prayer as difficult is a stumbling block for many, however, and I believe it is in those instances that the Lord is standing by, waiting for one of his children to teach, to lead the way to His ears.

I think often of my cousin Joey, who became a casualty of the VietNam war, but a few years earlier spent several weeks with his "up north" cousins.  My youth group was accustomed to going around the circle lifting up prayers until everyone had the opportunity to offer a prayer.  Joe quickly whispered to me, "When it's my turn, you'll have to tell me what to say!"  We came out of that meeting with Joey's pride intact, but I'm sure I missed many opportunities to demonstrate to him just how easy he could make those prayers for himself.  I don't know to this day whether I will be able to meet him in heaven, but I do know that I had a responsibility to him, and I'm sure I did not make the most of that responsibility.

How simple it really is to speak to God, our creator!  How great it is also that He is always listening for our every word. Simple words may have deep meaning, and I again wish to offer Hallie's simple prayer, "Let me live in such a way that those who know me but don't know God will come to know God because they know me."

No comments:

Post a Comment