Heidi’s Prayer

Since Heidi was about 1 1/2 years old, we’ve always had bedtime prayers. Jon and I alternate who puts the kids to bed at night, and this past Saturday night, it was my turn.  We read a story, and I let her chat for a minute or two (this girl’s always got something to say!! I’m pretty sure she gets that from me, although Jon’s parents have commented that he used to get chatty at bedtime when he was a kid, too). So we talked about dolls and friends and school, and then I said, “Okay, let’s pray.”

Now, I always encourage her to pray, but for some reason she usually says, “No, you pray, mom.” And not just at bedtime; she’s been hesitant to pray at dinnertime, too.  I’ve wondered why… does she think she’s too little to talk to God? Is she afraid of God? Does she just not know what to say? Does she think she needs to pray “right” for God to hear her?  Or maybe it’s the out-loud thing that freaks her out. When I ask her why she doesn’t want to pray she says, “I don’t know. I just don’t want to.”  So I gladly do it, and I wait for those rare momens when she says, “Okay, mom, I’ll pray!” Well, Saturday night was one of those times! She wanted to pray out loud, and I was so glad. I could not wait to hear what she would say.

So here it is– in all its simplicity and profundity. The prayer for a four (almost five!) year old:  “And God, make the bad people good, and please, do it right now!”

In these days and weeks of amazingly confusing politics and intense national emotion… in these days of storms that have taken people’s homes and lives… in these days– the normal ones, the crazy ones, the tragic ones and stressful ones, my daughter has reminded me of God’s power to redeem people and situations. God can change hearts! He can change circumstances! And He can do it right now! I choose to have faith. Thanks, Heidi. Once again, you’ve been my teacher.

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5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Robert Martin
    Sep 08, 2008 @ 15:53:57

    Out of the mouths of babes…

    Thanks for sharing this, Kris! It reminded me to listen to my girls, too… they might just teach me a few things.

    Reply

  2. Mike
    Sep 09, 2008 @ 20:58:30

    That kid is a stitch! And at what age does it stop being acceptable to ask God to do things right now? As in, “I know you’ve got a purpose and a plan, but I’d sure like to know what it is—right now!

    Just wondering….

    Reply

  3. Robert Martin
    Sep 10, 2008 @ 07:34:01

    Mike,

    I don’t know HOW MANY times I’ve prayed that over the past year:

    “God, my Mom is sick, please heal her RIGHT NOW!”

    “God, my Mom is dying, please heal her RIGHT NOW!”

    “God, my Mom is dying, please take her RIGHT NOW!”

    I don’t think you can ever be too old to pray that way…

    Reply

  4. Anna
    Sep 30, 2008 @ 16:37:33

    I’ve been shy about praying out loud my whole life. Doesn’t mean I don’t want to pray, so don’t worry if Heidi feels the same way. Some things need to be prayed without an audience.

    Reply

  5. Annette
    Oct 14, 2008 @ 22:37:10

    Her apprehensiveness with praying out-loud may just simply be genetic or humaness….I could answer “yes” in regards to myself for every one of your ponderings over why she prefers you do the “out-loud” praying.

    On another note: I do believe she is filled with wisdom….she seems to come-up with some pretty profound thoughts!

    Reply

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