Sunday, December 9, 2007

Ponderings on Prayer (Part 3)

A couple of weeks ago, I posted my first "Ponderings on Prayer" to my church's singles website, which has blogging capabilities. If you recall, in that first post, I listed several questions, such as when, where, why to pray, postures in prayer, fasting, etc.

One of the comments I received back over there was, "I dont worry so much about the technical aspects of my praying, I just pray. If I cant get myself to bend my knees at times and pray in certain postures I think Im supposed to be in, then Ill just talk to him however I can in that moment."

I have to say that I agree with that comment completely; I don't think it always necessarily matters where we are or what we are physically doing when we pray. God still hears and answers. The Bible just encourages us to pray continually. Sometimes prayers are spontaneous, leaving us no options as far as what to do.

But what about the times when your prayer is not spontaneous? The times when you actually set aside time to approach the Father and tell Him what's on your heart? That's what I'm inquiring about. I just can't help but wonder if what we do in those times really does make a difference, not necessarily in God's reaction to us, but in our frame of mind and how we approach Him???

This question has been brought to my attention recently because of someone I worship with. I dunno whether to call him a friend or an acquaintance; I don't know him very well, or at least not as well as I'd like to. I rarely speak to him. But he speaks to me, almost every time we worship together, without even knowing it! You see, nearly every time we pray, he goes to his knees in prayer. Most Sundays I am privileged to witness this, and am challenged to approach God with the same mindframe--with such humility. And I can't help but wonder if he knows something I don't.

I believe that when we take the time to physically approach God like that, it can make a difference in our prayers. I believe this, because I've done so before, though not often, and only in the privacy of my home. (I'm not sure how I would feel about it in public worship.) But also, I've discovered something that I've done physically that seems to have a positive effect the way I feel while praying...

And this may sound like the stupidest thing in the world, but I'm going to share anyway...

It's my hair...I've grown it out. I know that Paul tells the church at Corinth that "if a woman has long hair, it is her glory." That's not necessarily what I was going for, though. It's not really something I did on purpose. See, my hair is very wavy to slightly curly. At the beginning of this year, I had put a light perm in it, just to enhance it's curliness. When I got tired of it, sometime in the middle of July, I put a chemical straightener in it. So all this time my hair had been growing, but I did not realize how much so, until I straightened it and saw how long it really was. And I noticed then that when I would bow my head in prayer, my hair was long enough to cover my face.

That's it for me, really. When I approach God, sometimes I feel so unworthy that I like for my face to be covered. And in accidentally letting my hair get longer than I normally do, (normally i keep it shoulder-length) I discovered that it does a wonderful job of that for me.

So it is now December, and (save about an inch or so trim) I have yet to cut my hair. It's about as long as it's been in a decade. If I could, I would post a picture, so you can see the difference between "normal" and "now." But there are very few pics of me floating around out there. (That's the way I like it.) I think I'm going to continue to grow it until it's long enough to donate. Until then, I feel like that's a physical way that I can approach God with humility, even in public worship, without feeling so self-conscious.

What about you? Do you think that the things we physically do when we pray can make a difference??? Are there some specific ways that you like to approach the Father? If so, do you only do them in private prayer, or do you approach Him that way in public prayer as well???

Even more of my ramblings...

Much love.

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