I prefer, God, to pray as Jesus did,
off on my own, alone, in solitude
and sometimes in brief, as when I
wake up and return to the cool pillow.
Typing is fine, too, quietly pressing
the keys as my imagination intersects
and collides with God the Spirit,
dredging up words and thoughts I had
no idea existed but have been buried
beneath the layers of what life’s handed
me, and are now coming up for air
and appearing on a screen as prayer.
Must I even admit, God, that praying
with others is much more of a challenge?
Yes, I can speak on the spot and engage
in spiritual and pastoral improv, but
it never feels the same as when it’s just us,
me and you. It never quite resembles this.
Rarely feels like I’ve said what I’ve needed
to say or wanted to. The dredging seems
to but scrape the surface. Imagination seems
stunted somehow. It feels like I’m shortchanging
you, me, and everyone involved because of that.
Even more difficult, Lord, is forced listening. I
really struggle with that. I even feel guilt. It’s the
reason I’ve not led my family in prayer much,
although the desire has always been there. But,
perhaps you’ve just nudged me, God…have you? Telling
me that we can be together in the quiet, in solitude,
writing prayers together. If so, it’s just reiterated to me
the value of doing it this way. I’ve just heard from
you, even as I type here in this empty house.
Thank you, Lord. Later, I shall pray with my family
in the secret, just like Jesus did. Amen.