A Peak at my Sometimes Prayer Life
A bit ago, Aden and I were listening to a song about learning how to pray. Who needs to learn how to pray, after all it’s just talking to God right? It seems like a pretty simple task. Well, not always. For me, there’s so many errands that I have to run between work, picking up the kids, helping with dinner, and bed time. My goal is to squeeze in as much as I can during the week, so I don’t have so much to stress about over the weekend. So, needless to say, my mind’s always running from one thought to the next. Often, I find it difficult to push these thoughts to the back of my mind long enough to have a focused, and intentional conversation with God.
I’ll give you a peek at what my (sometimes) prayer life can look like. Ready? Here is goes:
“Lord, I really need help with….hhmm, I wonder if I locked the front door? Oh Lord, I’m so sorry for my wandering mind. Forgive me, I ask that you would…should I go food shopping on my lunch break tomorrow, or wait for the weekend. Ack! There I go again! God, I really want to focus on you right now, so I’m going to…ZZzzzzzzzz“
That’s not even the end of it! It continues after I wake in the middle of the night and realize I’ve been sleeping for hours:
“Oh snap! I’m so sorry I fell asleep on you! Who does that!?”
I know this is really lazy, and a little embarrassing. I feel like a heathen, but it is what it is. So, what will I do? I can pretend nothing’s wrong, and that I got it all together-but why, who am I trying to impress? Or I can practice. I know, boo! But seriously… Practice, just like when I was in school, until I get it right. Honestly, I wasn’t even good at it then. Focusing can be difficult, so here are some new techniques that I’ll be working on:
- Keep my prayer book with me-Whenever something pops into my head that I want to pray about, or if someone comes to me with a request, I write it down. So, now when I pray I have something to focus on, and it helps to keep my mind from wandering off.
Sometimes I’m just so busy that when I finally crash out on my bed, my body’s reaction is to sleep. Falling asleep while praying isn’t some deep, hidden, Dr. Phil type of meaning for the way I feel about God. I admit I still struggle with, “if you really cared Jen, you’d stay awake”. It’s just a little thing I like to call exhaustion.
- I’ve learned that if I can just give it the old one-two-thrust, I can roll myself out of bed, and get on my knees. I’m less likely to fall asleep when I’m in my praying position (not that it hasn’t happened occasionally). Never mind about that, the important thing is that I never give up! (also, this is different than when I wrote about Why we started praying on our knees. What I’m speaking of here is my one-on-one time with God).
- I also print out lots of “how to pray for….” bookmarks. I have a Pinterest board specifically for encouragement and I’ve pinned prayers with references from the Bible so I can pray for specific people in my family. Having these print outs help me to stay focused the same way my prayer book does. It also helps me to learn scripture and how to biblically pray for others.
So, like I said earlier, Aden and I were discussing this learning to pray thing. I acted out my prayer life to him and he thought it was bonkers, then admitted he does the same thing. I’m glad I could help him understand that there’s some struggles we all can relate to. I’m also thankful for the opportunity to talk with him and let him know that there’s no right way to get started, and nothing that should stop you from trying-even if you don’t think you’re measuring up.
OK, feel better knowing you’re not alone? Oh-not that you’re going through this, or anything…(wink).