For anyone who has ever felt distracted while trying to pray . . .
Hello God, it’s me.
Well – obviously, you know it’s me, but I confess I’ve been a bit busy recently, so I thought I ought to check in with you again.
So: here I am. You have my full attention – well, for the next quarter of an hour or so, anyway. If I don’t get this card in the post tonight, it won’t get there in time for Aunt Maud’s birthday, and we all know what she’s like when she’s in a bad mood. Actually . . . why is she so grumpy? I feel like she still hasn’t forgiven me for the time I accidentally trod mud into her new carpet 15 years ago. At this rate, her grudge will outlast the carpet.
Sorry, not a good start. What’s that thing the psalmist says about entering your courts with thanksgiving? Clearly, you’ve given me lots of things to be grateful for, so here we go:
Thank you for loving me: that’s an easy one.
No, no, that sounds big-headed. What I meant was, it’s clear that I should be giving thanks for your love. Although – if I’m honest – some days I don’t feel very loved. Or lovable, come to that. I can understand why you love people like that woman who led the Bible study the other day: she’s always smiling, and her children are adorable.
Ah, children. Yes, I know they’re a gift from you, but I sometimes wish you’d kept the receipt.
Sorry, just my idea of a joke: I know I shouldn’t make comparisons.
Okay, thank you for my children. Thank you that the little one only had two tantrums in Sunday school this week, and thank you that the eldest has at long last decided that vegetables aren’t poisonous. It would be nice if she’d learn to eat others besides carrots and roast potatoes, but I suppose it’s a start.
Hmm, how about some intercessions? (I think that’s the spiritual word – I don’t want it to sound like a shopping list.)
So . . . please could you help me with the children, and could you make sure that work goes alright tomorrow? I didn’t mean to get on the wrong side of that customer yesterday, and I certainly didn’t deliberately spill coffee in her handbag, whatever she said. (Although I’m tempted to say she deserved it.)
What else was there I wanted to ask you? Oh yes, please be with whoever’s leading the service on Sunday: that first song we had last week was way too high, and I’m sure the drummer doesn’t need to be quite so loud.
Well, I think that’s everything. It’s been good to have this time with you – makes me feel like I’m not a complete disaster, faith-wise. We must . . .
Sorry? You had some things to say, too?
Yeah, I suppose listening is an important part of prayer. It’s just that I really do need to get to the post office, pronto.