God has taught me so much in a thousand different ways. Certainly, His Word is my highest and best teacher. But I’ve also learned some valuable life and spiritual lessons through my cat, an overflowing coffee pot, a nasty garbage can, a wrecked car, an old barn, my kid, and a buzzard in the road. Yesterday my granddaughter became my teacher, which is not unusual. God sends so many lessons through that little girl, probably because He knows she gets right to my heart.
It was supper time and she was doing everything but coming to the table. We were all getting frustrated with her and it was turning into a battle of the wills. Finally, an unhappy Joy climbed into her seat with her bottom lip protruding as we extended hands to pray the blessing. In our house, Poppy prays first and she will follow with her own version. She’s done this since before she had words. You really should listen to a little kid’s prayer sometime – it will bless your heart so much. I love to hear her pray and I am sure God does too. But when she’s upset she will decline to pray. Except last night.
Poppy finished his part and Joy’s mommy asked her if she was going to pray. Big little-girl sigh. “I don’t want to pray because I’m aggravate (her exact word), but I can pray.” Out of the mouths of babes . . . When do I feel less like praying? When I’m aggravate. When I’m frustrated. When I’m angry. When do I most need to pray? When I’m aggravate. When I’m frustrated. When I’m angry.
She was a real-life example of Paul’s words to the church in Thessalonica: “Be Joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess 5:16-18). By the time she rambled her way to “Amen” the tone at the table had softened dramatically.
Here’s what I learned from my pint-sized teacher: if I only pray when I’m in the mood to pray, I will rarely pray. You know it’s true for you too. Look at Jesus. He prayed in the hardest moment of His life just before He went to the cross. His prayer was honest and God didn’t chastise Him for His raw feelings.
So pray Beloved – no matter how you feel. Good or bad. Happy or sad. It’s always a good time to pray. Even when you’re aggrevate. Especially when you’re aggrevate.