Becoming Like Children

This, from The Way of Love: Pray (Church Publishing 2018

“Every once in awhile we realize what a lot we have to learn. Usually we realize at the same time what a great sense of humor God must have — how true it is that those who live in Christ will have their world turned upside-down. A five-year old asked her mother at breakfast one morning about her bedtime prayers. She wasn’t really sure, she admitted, just what to say to God. ‘God likes to hear from us’ the mother responded, ‘the same things all mommies and daddies like to hear from their children: please and thank you and I’m sorry.’ Considering this, the little girl licked jam from her fingers in order to count to three: please; thank you; I’m sorry. She nodded, then waved the two unaccounted-for fingers and said, ‘Maybe there are two other things I say a lot that God would like to hear from me.’ The mother asked absently ‘What’s that’? as she began to clear the table (the lesson being over). ‘Maybe’ the girl suggested, ‘I could tell God “wow” and “I love you.”

For reflection in solitude or in the company of others: What are your favorite things to say to God? If the only words you had to say to God were the words this mother and child mentioned, would they be enough? When you were a child, who taught you to pray?