Can You Hear Me Now?Remember the Fisher Price toy telephone? Of course you do. Your little ones might even have one.
I remember sitting on the floor with my Mommy beside me trying to teach me what numbers to dial in an emergency and drilling me on my home phone number. The eyes on the toy telephone would wiggle and bounce at me and I was too distracted playing with my Mommy to really care about emergencies.
Now I’m the Mommy teaching phone numbers and watching the thrill in their eyes at being beside me to learn. We’ve moved five times since my oldest was born. That’s a lot of numbers. Chances are good they won’t remember these numbers 20 years from now. They’ll remember their time with me.
I think prayer is a lot like this. We need to teach our children to pray. We need to sit with them and teach them the Lord’s Prayer (Luke 11). We need to train them to be with God through prayer.
But think about it, do you remember every prayer you’ve ever prayed? They probably won’t either. We need to teach them that prayer is not all about requests or the words we use to communicate. Just like the numbers they’ll remember so briefly, the memory of each prayer will slip away. What matters are the moments that we sit at the feet of God, just being in His presence feeling caught up in His love. We need to teach our children to get excited in the presence of God to the point that everything else fades.
Prayer is as much an act of listening as it is of speaking. Sometimes I imagine God saying “Can you hear me now? Are you ready to listen? I have a plan if you’ll just be quiet and hear it.”
Psalm 85:8 NIV “I will listen to what God the Lord will say; he promises peace to his people, his saints- but let them not return to folly.”