One of the great gifts my father gave to me was the ability to tell stories. One of my preferred pastimes as a boy was to sit and listen to Dad tell stories about his childhood. One of my favorite involved my grandmother and her prayer closet.
Dad, according to his recollection, was about 10 years old when my grandfather (Poppawe Damon) took him and his two younger siblings, Joe and Eileen, out to mend a fence that was about 200 yards behind their house.
As they worked my grandfather suddenly stopped what he was doing and looked back toward the house. Poppawe’s sudden lack of activity caught the attention of the kids, and he answered their unspoken question with a simple, “Listen.”
As they stood there in near silence, the kids began to hear what he had heard. In the distance, they made out a single voice. It was hushed but earnest; tender and pleading.
It did not take the kids long to figure out who was talking. It was their mother. And it didn’t take them long to figure out who she was talking to—God. The longer Momawe prayed, the louder she became.
Dad still remembers standing there at the edge of the woods listening to his mother pray. He remembers the intensity and passion in her prayer. He remembers hearing her pray for him, Joe, and Eileen. He remembers her crying with joy at the presence of her Lord as Jesus met her in the midst of her worship and petition. He remembers Poppawe telling them that Momawe was in the closet, where she went to meet with God (Matthew 6:5-6).
I heard this story many times while I was growing up. And while the actual event took place nearly 20 years before I was born, I still sense the reverence of that moment.
Dad was given a great gift that day. He was able to hear how his mother prayed when she thought no one was listening.
Christian prayer in its most intimate form is like that. It is an intimate conversation. It’s raw but beautiful. It is not ritualistic and measured but relational and empowered. It’s saying what you would say when you think no one but God is listening.
If you have a desire to grow and be strengthened in your prayer life please join us for a live webinar event, “Prayer: What It Is, What It Isn’t, and Why It Matters”.
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