Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Why pray?

When watching the news, I often pray sort of automatically for things that are contrary to my beliefs. For example, I'm thinking, "Please steer Ike away from Mimi and the people who have not yet returned home after the last hurricane."

I find it difficult to ask God to interfere with nature but I admit I do occasionally. Sometimes my life would suggest that there is someone or something that influences the rain or snow or other phenomenon in my favor. I realize that is terribly egocentric but I assume I'm not supposed to be doing something if the weather seems to be preventing or delaying it.

When I pray for others, which is the usual pattern, I ask for guidance in dealing with whatever situation they find themselves in. I request patience and peace and insight and others' inspiration, whatever is needed to get them thru or make the most of whatever is happening. I ask God to send love, light, peace, whatever is needed.

I guess life is somewhat easier if God can be blamed for both good and perceived evil. For me, I'm the one who messes with life. God is there to help me work thru challenges by giving me someone to talk with. The God I chat with is neither Santa Claus nor Mother Nature.

So, please, God, help those in the path of weather's death and destruction deal with what may seem like no future or at least an uncertain one. You are always there for me and for them. Please find a way to help us all learn to listen and act in community as you would have us live. Jesus gave us the guidelines. Help us understand and implement them.

By the way, God, that goes for our politicians too.


Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

Amen to your prayer.

Kirkepiscatoid said...

Excellent post.

I have basically given up praying for "outcomes" but it is human nature to slip now and then and ask for an outcome for someone you love (like Mimi) or even rarely "pray some shit" on someone (like years ago when my frend JL was going through a very contentious divorce and a 'cane was going at SC and JL's estranged was still living there and I asked God to keep people safe "except for the guy in the gray Taurus, you can have at him"....)

But I like to think God sees the emotions behind our intent, and the occasional slip into outcome is ok. And I did feel pretty guilty about the "gray Taurus" remark...

What I have learned to do over the years is to just ask God to be with (fill in the blank) for those I love, and be with "whatever comes." As for the more difficult people, I have resorted to "Bless (difficult person), change me."

It's funny, the closer I get to God, the less I ask for specifics. I have noticed when I am feeling alienated from God is when I slip into the specifics more. I think there's a message in that for me somewhere!

PseudoPiskie said...

Oh, heavens, I have to apologize frequently for those vengeful thoughts. But they make us feel so good at the moment. lol

I'm most appreciative that God has a sense of humor!

Crimson Rambler said...

Well I take great comfort from the unedified things that the Psalmist says, and I am not embarrassed to pray, "O Lord, when will you slay the wicked?" knowing that it's quite safe 'cuz he isn't going to do it on my say-so...
And somebody I was reading this week...apologies if you recognize yourself...said we have every reason to address natural phenomena ... and ask them to go elsewhere, or settle down, etc.