I mentioned last week that Chloe has started saying her bedtime prayers herself. Her sweet little prayers really are the most precious thing I've ever heard, and it's no wonder to me why God chooses to use little children as examples for the rest of us.
Mommy says, "Chloe, do you want to pray tonight?"
Then she folds her little hands under her chin and starts talking in a soft whisper (while mommy does the same and pretends to close her eyes while actually watching Chloe pray):
Lowd God, cank you for mommy. Cank you for daddy. Cank you for grandma. Cank you for grandpa. Cank you for Papa... Ganna... Pops... Nana... House... Cookies... Baby... Blanket... Bed... Light... Ducks... Blocks... Books... Kitty-kitty who gave me a boo boo....
Some nights this can go on for a really long time, until she has completely exhausted her entire vocabulary. Some nights it's over as soon as she finishes listing all the family members.
The first night I heard her sweet little prayer, I teared up and thought "Aww, how sweet." While it blessed my heart that she was so comfortable praying, I am ashamed to admit that I wasn't all that convinced that those kind of prayers really make a huge difference in the Heavens.
I mean, she didn't lift her hands. She didn't cry. She didn't speak in a foreign tongue or "cry out" to the Lord.
I mean, it was a sweet prayer, don't get me wrong. I just wasn't convinced it had a lot of ... you know... power.
But then life struck our little family. Tragedy. Crisis. Whatever you want to call it. And I found myself unable to find a prayer to pray.
I didn't know how to pray. I didn't know what to say. I was angry and confused and utterly and completely overwhelmed by our circumstances. Mostly I felt helpless. There was nothing I could do except pray... and that just wasn't coming easily.
And in the midst of that place, Chloe's sweet little prayer came back to me, and I found myself talking to Jesus: Lord God, Thank you for my family. Thank you because we're healthy and warm and dry and fed. Thank you for covers on the bed and food on the table. Thank you for my strong husband. Thank you for my sweet daughter. Thank you for caring parents and loving friends. Thank you that we're not alone in this because we have a lot of people who love us....
It may have been with bigger words and a clarified accent, but it was essentially the same prayer.
And. it. was. powerful.
I walked out of that prayer time with a revelation of the goodness of God in this difficult time. I realized that, even though things are difficult, God is still the King, and He is still working on our behalf. He knew this trial was coming, and He hedged us in before and behind.
Suddenly the situation didn't seem so overwhelming. I knew that God was in control... all because my daughter taught me how to pray.