When your daughter goes on vacation and texts you the following pictures after her flight into the jungle, you’d better know how to pray.
Annoyingly, my prayers at moments like these probably sound more like a toddler begging for candy at the store…
“PLEEEASE, OH PLEESSAAAEEE Lord keep my child safe- can you? can you please, please, pretty please????? Please keep those crocs, snakes and wild monkeys away and could you try to get her a better plane for her return flight Lord? ..like one with wings that don’t look so “homemade-ish,” maybe one that’s big enough for a flight attendant and a drink cart.. or at the very least one where the pilot has some privacy??😦 PLEEEASEEE???”
And yes my friends, I have four- count ’em, FOUR– grown kids…and no, my eldest daughter and her boyfriend weren’t the only ones who chose a Zika hot-spot for their vacation; my son and his wife just returned from Jamaica..so trust me, I had the good Lord on speed dial and was hammer calling Him like crazy..
Then I reminded myself of a little experiment I tried this summer..a period of no prayer requests- just thanks. I remembered how freeing it felt to short-circuit my habit of “hyper- praying.”
I know the bible tells us to pray, and we should, but sometimes the very act of urgently praying takes on an oppressive, obsessive quality and instead of feeling relief, I feel almost superstitiously chained to the act.
Thanksgiving on the other hand is completely liberating.
I am quite literally handing my concerns, my cares, my kids over to the Lord and thanking Him for everything. The minute I feel myself defaulting to “high anxiety supplication” I immediately try to override those thoughts with a fresh flood of thanks. When I focus on gratitude my anxiety melts away and I am able to focus on that which I’d otherwise miss..
Because after-all, my daughter sent these wondrous pictures too…