Monday, July 18, 2011

I Don't Know How.

"I don't know how to pray anymore."

A friend said this to me; she is an ordained Anglican priest. And she doesn't know how to pray.

And neither do I.

The upturn of my life is entirely overwhelming, and yet I am well aware that I am not the only one. There is heartache everywhere I look.

Some of my closest friends are preparing to say goodbye to their baby girl, only a year after they said goodbye to their baby boy. Two children, born to the same family, with a brain deficiency so severe that it cannot sustain life. Two hits. One family.

Another family at my church has been battling their daughter's cancer since she was a toddler; she is now six years old. And they learned this week that this tumor, after major surgery last week, is still present and pressing. And the doctors have reached the end of their conclusions, have done all they can do.

A friend has spent her life in ministry, pursuing graduate degrees to the doctoral level. She is skilled, gifted, and has so much to offer - yet she is stocking groceries as a fulltime job. Her aspirations sit on the shelf, her gifts seemingly set aside.

Children are sick. Parents die. Accidents happen. Diagnoses are true. Dreams are delayed or dashed all together.

I read, "In thanksgiving, present all your requests to God."

And yet my heart seems too weak to speak at all.

I read, "Be still and know that I am God."

Be still and know.

Be still.


I appreciate this permission, since it's all I can do today. Simply be.


"Mrs. Franklin, do you really and truly believe in God with no doubts at all?"

"Oh, Una, I really and truly believe in God with all kinds of doubts."

But I base my life on this belief.

~ Madeleine L'Engle


One Small Scribe said...

Praying that in the night times, when words elude you, He will give you songs.

"By day the Lord directs his love, at night His song is with me--a prayer to the God of my life."

Penny said...

I went through a period several years ago like you are going through now. My beloved paternal grandmother was put in the nursing home. I wasn't "allowed" to bring her home with me. My maternal grandfather died and, while it was time, watching my grandmother suffer his loss was unbearable. My favorite uncle was comatose and died exactly five weeks after my grandfather. None of my prayers for them "seemed" to be answered. I prayed, asking God to show me how to pray. All I remember during that prayer was "hearing" the scripture that says when we don't even know how to prayer, the Spirit intercedes on our behalf. That's what I clung to.
Your friends' situations are dire and extremely sad. But God and the Spirit are not overwhelmed as we are. He is made strong in our weakness. Just ask the Spirit to do the praying for you. It was a long time before my battered prayer life recovered from that period. God bless you and I am praying for your friends' comfort during these trials.

Kilp said...

you don't know me.. I found your blog through a friend long ago, and have been a silent observer, learner, and prayer warrior ever since. This post today reminded me of a favorite song of mine- it's called Be Still- it's right there in the middle of the page. I hope you'll listen to it. In fact, I'm dancing to it at my church this upcoming Sunday, I can get you a link to watch, if you would like. Anyway, I hope you like the song, and I hope it helps you to be able to Be Still and find some peace in the midst of God's awesome presence.

Candice said...

Yesterday our speaker in church shared some insight I enjoyed about praying. It's called "But if not" She said we pray for all our many blessings and some some times we have to say "But if not" my faith in your plan is still there and I trust in the Lord. This does not make hard times easier just reminds us that earths trials are present and we can just "Be" when we need to.

Kay Day said...

There are more ways to pray than with words.
Every tear, every breath--a prayer. He hears your heartbeat. He hears.

Erica said...

This spoke to my soul. Right now, it's how I feel, I don't know how to pray anymore and it hurts...

Jan Verhoeff said...

Prayer is a state of existence, not just words we say. ~Me.