What do your “Real” Prayers Sound Like?

Some people dread praying aloud like a cat dreads a bath.

You say you can relate?  When it comes time for closing prayer you hyper-ventilate?  Suddenly decide you need to go to the bathroom?  Get a case of laryngitis?

Me?  Like it or not, I’ve been doing it for a long time.  Occupational hazard.

So I’ve gotten at least fairly ok at the “lifting ups” and the “if it’s your wills” and words like “grace and mercy”.

My out loud prayers are kind of like business letters all proper and punctuated, politically correct and polite.

But my real prayers?  They sound more like David’s prayers of desperation than Mary’s Magnificat.

My “real” prayers sound like:

Helpmehelpmehelpme!  Oh, look!  There’s a bird!”

Or like a letter from a kid at camp home to his parents:

My “camp letter” to God might sound more like…

Dear Mom and Dad, (or God)

I have to write this to get chicken dinner tonight. (or, I have to pray so I can say I prayed cuz I’m a Christian and it’s kind of expected)

It’s really hot here and I’m out of underwear, and send snacks. (or, It’s about me, and it’s about Me, and it’s about ME!)


Laura (or, Amen)

But here’s what I’m thinking.  As a parent, any communication from my kids is golden.  I don’t care what they say, I just want them talking to me.

And as a parent, I know they’re kids.  They’re not going to talk like me or think like me, or always remember their manners.

Yeah, I want them to know me, to trust me, to obey me, to ask my opinion, but they’re kids, and if they’re talking to me that’s a start!

What do your “real” prayers sound like?

6 thoughts on “What do your “Real” Prayers Sound Like?

  1. Laura, I love your authenticity. This is true of me, too. I can be very good at “sounding spiritual” in front of others when my own personal prayers are much more disjointed and selfish. I have found the practice of journaling my prayers helps a ton. It makes me more aware of my words as I pray them. Now, if only I had the discipline to do it more often…


    • Thanks Stephanie! Yes to journaling prayers! I agree both about awareness and discipline. It seems when I am most low is when I’m most motivated to journal and be honest about my feelings.

      When I first met John he would journal his prayers in Spanish for fear someone might get ahold of the book and read them. If they were really personal, he’d try writing in Greek!


  2. Your photo made me laugh! Thank you for such truth. I have speny many a time in church bathrooms hiding out. The sad thing is that once I got courage to stop hiding I was never called on to pray. Guess I did not seem spiritual enough. Kinda glad now lookin back because God, not man has shown me how to pray by showing me we do not need another so called proper prayer. Now when I pray I speak my heart because people need real. Thank you for being real.


  3. I need to pray out loud – which is a challenge when the kids are in and out of the room or Rob is sitting nearby. It helps me to stay on track and to not think faster than I’m praying. Otherwise I am exactly the “helpmehelpme…oh look. there’s a bird” (or, I need to switch the laundry, etc). Also a prayer list has helped. For every day of the week I have different family members listed as well as ministries/organizations/church/school etc listed. Its a good reminder when I think I have nothing to pray about (yeah, right).


  4. That’s a great reminder, Becca. I agree, that praying out loud alone can help!

    I wish the prayer lists had helped me. I’ve had really good intentions, but seem to forget. I rationalize that I’m being responsive to the Spirit which is bringing to mind those I need to pray for 🙂


I'd love to hear from you and others will be enriched by your thoughts! Share here and continue the conversation.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s