EXCERPT - Confessions of a Faithful Slacker: 7 Steps to Renewing Your Relationship with Christ
How to Pray...
"Sometimes we get caught up in thinking our prayers have to be formal and stiff. Spoken in an English accent and in the King James vernacular:
Dearest Father that doth ruleth all the Eartheth. Thou dost not understandeth me for I dost not understandeth myself either. (pronounced eye-ther, not ee-ther.)
I mean, it’s fine if you feel comfortable with it, but saying the words like that does not make your prayer any more official in God’s eyes. What matters is the sincerity of your heart, your faith when you’re asking and your genuine desire for the relationship. That’s when we really get to experience God in our lives. That’s when we really witness His miraculous hand. That’s when He truly begins to reveal Himself to us.
Sometimes we don’t know what to say, but all we have to do is say what’s on our mind, in our hearts. It’s not that He doesn’t already know; God’s like a best friend who you just trust with your innermost secrets, but better. He’ll never repeat them!"
From the forthcoming title, Confessions of a Faithful Slacker: 7 Steps to Renewing Your Relationship with Christ [Summer 2015]
On the topic of prayer...
One day when I was about twenty - some many years ago - my grandmother called. Somewhere in the conversation I told her I was looking for work. She told me to pray to a specific saint. I don't remember which saint it was. I asked her why I needed to pray to the saint and not directly to the Source. She said, "Because sometimes you need a lawyer!"
Then she hung up on me!
She loved us unconditionally and to no end, but the one thing she wouldn't do, was be questioned about her beliefs.
I prayed to that saint. I got a job. I never prayed to saints after that, but directly to the Source - Jesus. That day, I inadvertently learned about intercessory prayer and praying for others.
Recently, I found notes she used to send me while I was away at college. Reading those notes brightened my day. And brought me to tears. In each note, she had a short greeting - a report on my grandfather, a reminder to pray (accompanied by a prayer booklet from a church retreat), a reminder to pray and a reminder that she would somehow be praying with me, a birthday wish and then some. Then she'd say she enclosed a small token - which was usually twenty dollars. That was big money!
Those tokens have long been spent, but her loving gestures, reminders to pray, and prayers have never left me. My heart is so full just recounting those days.
Today, I realize the importance of having a person(s) of faith in your life. My grandmother's faith inspired and encouraged mine. And my mother's and sisters' and most everyone who came in contact with her. And I love her that much more for it.
Today is my grandma's birthday. She would have been 90 today. She lived a full life with Jesus at the center of it. It's been fifteen years. Still I wish could talk to her one more time. I wish she could see how her faith and lessons trickled down to each of us and the love of Christ infiltrated our hearts. I wish she could see how much she mattered to us.
I dedicate this post to her.
Rest in His peace, Grandma.