Monday, June 07, 2010

Prayer, do you do it?

We had a great lesson on prayer yesterday and it really got me thinking.  I love the ability that we have to pray to our Heavenly Father, to share our deepest struggles and our brightest moments.  We get to ask for needs to be met and share our gratitude for our many blessings.  It is an amazing time to contemplate and receive personal revelation.

As I sat there listening I was reminded of the struggle that I have with prayer.  It is not that I struggle with the concept, or struggle with the belief of its power.  What I struggle with is the fact that I HAVE to do it.  I never felt I have been a rebellious person, but in this area I really feel rebellious.  I know when I get in to bed I need to say my prayers but there are times when I just don't want to and it really is because I don't want to HAVE to do it. 

Another rebellious reason I don't like to pray is I don't want to be challenged.  I know when I pray for patience the next day is going to be extremely trying, when I pray to help me with what I eat, guaranteed there will be extra awesome food temptations.

All the above makes it challenging, but I do realize it is all by my own choice.  I had the sweetest experience with Lauren and prayer that I shared recently.  She can be a lot little challenging at times.  It was a particularly rough day, and I am sure the night before I prayed for patience, especially patience with her.  I prayed that I would know how to love her, how to make sure she is getting what she needs.  If I need to change please help me.  With all that I asked I wasn't terribly surprised when I wanted to blow my top.  Clutching my hands I went into my room and kneeled down to converse with my Heavenly Father, first asking for forgiveness for the way I lost it with Lauren (I come from a family of yellers, and I am not too different!)  I got a peaceful feeling and the prompting came to me that I needed to let Lauren know that I pray for her.  So I went in and told her how much I loved her and that I was sorry for yelling.  Then I asked if we could pray together.  She said yes.  As I started to pray out loud, she repeated everything I had said.  It was such a sweet moment.  I kid you not when I tell you her countenance changed and my attitude did as well.  Then we cuddled on her bed, she was adorable and happy and we read some books together.  It was exactly what I needed.  I also learned that she needs to know that we love her and she needs attention too.

I think so often that we use prayer as a last resort, because we don't stop to listen until we are in crisis mode.  I know for me when I can't do it anymore and I am pleading for help, I get a quick answer.  I am sure I had been given the answer so many times before I just didn't stop to listen and obey.

As I was thinking of these experiences I realized that Heavenly Father doesn't challenge us with this type of answer.  Yes, He wants us to grow, He does want us to change in any way that brings us closer to Him.  But the thought that touched me the most was the realization that He knows what I am capable of.  He promised he will never give me more than I can handle, this is His way to help shape me into a better me!  When my patience is tried to the very tips of the end, He knows I can handle it and I will grow from it.  So in a round about way, I know that prayer works, it works to let us know we are not alone, that we are loved.  I am so grateful for that knowledge!

P.S. The picture has nothing to do with the post but I know it is like dessert after a heavy meal, and she is super sweet!

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