Young Lady is great at prayer. She says things like, "God, you're so pretty and big. You're so smart and wonderful. And I love you."
Big Boy is less eloquent, "Thank you God ..... in Jesus' name, Amen!" (This spoken with a giggle). But occasionally he's a barometer for his parents' spiritual lives, like the time he prayed (at night) (in his bed) "God, please give us a great parking spot. In Jesus' name, Amen!"
Mr. Welcome confessed later with a gulp that he had better up his prayer life if that is all Big Boy is retaining. More recently, after getting a scare, Big Boy prayed, "Jesus, I want you to come here in our lives." He pronounces "here" with a guttural "H," compliments of our Arabic friends, with whom we spent a lot of time before they moved to England.
When I was little, I remember praying that Jesus would come sleep on my pillow, and I even moved over to make room for him. That was before I forgot all about God, and that's "forgot" with a capital "F."
But sometimes I think he saved me just for who that little girl was, before things got all jaded. At the moment when I was at my lowest with everything stripped away (intensive drinking getting me into trouble, the house I grew up in sold in my parent's divorce, my brother's suicide, a car accident that should have killed me, but instead left me with a crippling depression, and one too many international moves to try and escape everything I was feeling ....)
4 The cords of death entangled me;
the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
5 The cords of the grave [b] coiled around me;
the snares of death confronted me.
In my early faith, I remember standing at the window in my room, looking across the rooftops of Paris, and simply saying, "God." At that moment, the sun broke through the clouds and danced across every rooftop in my view, warming my heart and bringing a joyful grin to my face.
6 In my distress I called to the LORD;
I cried to my God for help.
From his temple he heard my voice;
my cry came before him, into his ears.
And then he saved me - so swiftly, so obviously. In my early faith, every prayer was answered, every reassurance that He was there was given me.
7 The earth trembled and quaked,
and the foundations of the mountains shook;
they trembled because he was angry.
8 Smoke rose from his nostrils;
consuming fire came from his mouth,
burning coals blazed out of it.
9 He parted the heavens and came down;
dark clouds were under his feet.
10 He mounted the cherubim and flew;
he soared on the wings of the wind.
11 He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him—
the dark rain clouds of the sky.
12 Out of the brightness of his presence clouds advanced,
with hailstones and bolts of lightning.
13 The LORD thundered from heaven;
the voice of the Most High resounded. [c]
14 He shot his arrows and scattered the enemies ,
great bolts of lightning and routed them.
15 The valleys of the sea were exposed
and the foundations of the earth laid bare
at your rebuke, O LORD,
at the blast of breath from your nostrils.
16 He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
he drew me out of deep waters.
17 He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
from my foes, who were too strong for me.
18 They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
but the LORD was my support.
19 He brought me out into a spacious place;
he rescued me because he delighted in me.
Like the most protective of parents, he doesn't like to see his children attacked - He brought me to a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.
I have to remember, in my often jaded view as an older Christian, who is often weary of life and effort ...
... that he still delights in me.