Friday, April 18, 2008

Uncensored Prayer

What's the book say...?
Everyone Poops?
Well... not my newborn daughter for the last 3 days.
If you have ever had kids you know this is a big thing to watch when they are first born. Their delicate bodies need to begin processing food correctly, and the doctors usually want you to record how often this happens.
Which is why we started to pray as a family that little Preslie would be able to poop. (It just hit me that if Preslie ever reads this when she gets older, she is going to kill me...)

Anyway, last night as I tucked my two older daughters into bed, we all took turns praying. Little Quinn likes to make up prayers as she goes, and I usually have to reign her in or she will keep mentioning things that I am sure please the heart of God, but are designed by her to prolong her bedtime. So, as she was slowly praying, I encouraged her to pray that Preslie would be able to poop. She did without flinching or snickering. Then Avery prayed for Preslie.
That is when I realized that kids don't mess around when it comes to prayer. They pray for what they need, and they don't craft their words into some magnanimous display of spirituality. They are honest and transparent.

Oh, if we were only a little more like that.
Unfortunately, many of us get the impression as we grow up that prayer is as much about style as it is content. That God is impressed with creative vocabulary. Or at least others are.

And so some might be led to pray for their constipated daughter like this: "Ohh Father, We beseech Thee, O Gracious and Glorious God, that Thou Wouldst Move Your Mighty Hand, and loose the stools of this small child, that Thou mightest Receive all the glory and the power and the praise forever. Amen"

Or, others might be tempted not to pray at all about such mundane or crass things.

Not my kids - "God, help Preslie to poop."

I believe it all goes back to being real Christians. It is not about appearances, it is not about impressing others, it is about the real, flesh and blood relationship we have with God.

So, let us be real, and offer God prayer from our hearts... and not from our stages.

Oh, and by the way - Preslie finally pooped last night - God answers prayers, especially the uncensored ones.

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