My Grandma Florence (Flo) was a tiny redhead who packed a whole lot of attitude into her little self. She wasn’t a woman who got on the floor to play or spread a ton of hugs and kisses around, but she was an incredibly faithful woman who was diligent in praying for her family.
She prayed the rosary every day. I remember going into her spare bedroom, and there on the dresser would lay her rosary beads, worn and weathered from constant use, prayers for her soul and the souls of those she loved.
I remember a story my sister Sara told me about a time she was staying in the guest room at Grandma’s. Apparently the guest room is where Grandma Flo sat and prayed her rosary every night, because Sara woke up with Grandma in the room, bottle of holy water in hand, spraying it in different directions.
When Sara woke up after being sprayed with water, she asked her what she was doing. Grandma shushed her and told her to go back to sleep. Normally we didn’t question Gram, but this one was just a little too odd for her to let go. Grandma finally explained that she prayed for each of her children and grandchildren every night and sprayed holy water in the direction of where they lived and asked God to watch over them and keep them safe.
Grandma wasn’t one to shower us with lots of hugs and kisses, but she did shower us with prayers!
Prayer takes on many different forms, from formal and structured prayer to having a continual conversation with God. I used to think prayer always had to be structured, with the right words and posture.
I think those things can be incredibly beneficial and helpful; but when I place too much emphasis on that, I often find myself more caught up in how I’m saying my prayers than what I’m saying. Just like we all have different ways of learning and communicating, just like our ways of organizing and processing are different, I think our prayers can be different as well.
For me, pretty much all my thoughts are a conversation with God. I’m a thinker. I could sit without the television or music on all day… just reading or writing or, when my body is exhausted, just lying in the quiet letting my thoughts wander.
And as I think of people in my life, events in the world, situations I am facing, the back and forth thoughts in my mind are just as conversational as talking to my best friend. It’s me wondering and processing and talking things through in my mind and listening for answers. Not great, audible, booming-voice-of-God answers, but the whispers that settle into my thoughts and resonate in my heart. It's about letting God know I’m here, I’m paying attention, I love Him and honor Him, and I'm in it with my whole heart.
Prayer is about building a relationship with God through conversation. A relationship that protects us and guides us because our own solutions usually don’t work. Our relationship through prayer also protects us against the attacks of the enemy. The enemy doesn’t want us in relationship with God, so as long as we are focused on keeping God at the forefront, evil will not win.
So, let’s take a moment today to do just that, to share in that kind of prayer together. If you'd like, leave your prayer request in the comment section and then take the time to pray for the intention of the person who commented before you. What a beautiful way to show God how much we love Him and each other!
With love and joy,