How My Prayers Have Changed

 Praying Out Loud
It has been mentioned by friends and it is also suggested in the addiction recovery work book that we pray out loud. I ignored that suggestion for some time. Finally I decided to do it.  I have now been praying out loud for several of months. It is working well. It forces me to think about what I am saying.

At first it was a little scary.  While listening to myself, it made it difficult to use my usual "vain repetitions."

A Conversation with My Father

For a couple of weeks in a row, a member of our group talked about his changing his prayers into a conversation with Heavenly Fathers instead of just going over lists.  As he stated: "It is so much easier to just pray a list of "thanks" and "asks" than it is to have an active, open, and honest conversation with Father in Heaven."  Click here to read that post.

So after he explained some of his experiences I decided to try it. I was already used to praying out loud, so this was an even newer experience. I am now doing this with just about all of my prayers each day. This latest change has been a huge blessing in my life. I have not received the kind of answers that he has, but I do feel that I am being more honest with expressing my thoughts, fears, and feelings.

I'm also finding that my prayers are getting much longer.  There is a lot of silence as I am pondering a lot about what I am saying and trying to listen.  I am not hearing anything, but perhaps as I continue....

What about My Lists?

Like my friend, I used to pray based on “lists.”  My “thankful” list, my “please bless” list, my “help me” list, etc. Those lists still exist in my mind, but they take a back seat to the more pressing issues of the day. Plus many of those items find their way into the conversation I am already having.

I Am More Comfortable

I am now comfortable with my new format of praying out loud and having a conversation with Heavenly Father. It seems much more natural. If someone were listening they would think my thoughts were disjointed--and they are. As feeling, thoughts and ideas enter my mind I express them--in the order in which they occur. And, yes, there is still quite a bit of silence between thoughts. But it's OK.  I looked at the clock a couple of days ago and I had probably been on my knees for 20 minutes. I am certain that most of my prayers are shorter than that, but at least I am not in a hurry to end the “conversation.”

When Do I Pray?

My major prayers are morning and evening kneeling next to my bed.  But if I feel like I need to pray at work, I just kneel down inside a private restroom and just talk to my Father.  As I’m leaving the house I may kneel down briefly beside a sofa and offer a prayer. A couple of times now I have found myself praying out loud while I am driving the car. But I still prefer a quiet room.  I do feel He is listening! 

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