Monday, August 24, 2009

Weekly Prayer Thought

They heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day... Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?” Genesis 3.8-9

Have you ever know someone who had a special "prayer voice." You know, their voice gets deeper when they pray. They are more serious than usual. Even their vocabulary gets more serious. There are "eths" at the end of verbs and "Thees" and "Thous" are added for good measure. Suddenly, in prayer, Elizabethan English is alive and well.

When I was in school we had a pastor who would always get a little sober just before he said, "Let us pray." All of us kids would roll with laughter because we had never heard lettuce pray. (I am still waiting.) The problem is that sometimes we take prayer so seriously, that we forget to be normal. We think that we have to prove something to God. We need to get hyper-spiritual. Somehow we think that we can prove something by our sincerity and our conviction. But that is not the case.

Prayer is important and should not be taken lightly, but we need to think of it as a regular part of our lives. Try to think of prayer like talking to a good friend or your spouse. Your friend would be put off- maybe offended- if you changed your tone and language every time you talked to him. He would wonder why you were being so weird.

It looks like, in the passage from Genesis, that Adam had a relationship with God that allowed them to just walk and talk together. They were friends. They were normal. There was give and take, talking and listening. This is how our prayer lives should be. We should "just talk" to God. You do not need to work yourself up into some spiritual frenzy. Good wants a relationship with you, not a ritual.

Prayer: Jesus, it is important to me that you and I have a good relationship. I want to pray. And I want to hear you speak to me. Show me how to lose any pretensions that I may have. Help me to be normal and "just talk" in my relationship with you. Amen.