Our food arrived and as I started to gobble, one of my boys looked at me and said, "aren't we going to pray?"
Um, sure, honey.
You see the trouble with this was that the prayers we had taught the children for dinner were singing prayers, most of which were loud with actions. It would not only be visible to everyone around us, but look a little foolish. Yet I knew if we didn't sing this prayer, questions and a possible a fit might ensue. And, yes, the pastor should probably be praying in public to be a good example to her children. So we sang - the "Superman" prayer, with our arms swinging in Superman like gestures "Thank you God, for giving us food,
Thank you God, for giving us friends,
For the food we eat, for the friends we meet, thank you God, now let's eat..."
with actions, and yes, people looked.
Kids keep us accountable don't they?
And now, everyplace we go to dinner, we pray together, just like we would if we were at home.
Truth be told, our prayer is a witness. Not in a showy kind of way, but as a proclamation of who we are and what we believe. We believe in the blessing of food, and we give thanks for it, and we pray for those who don't who don't have food. And when we do this publicly, it is a testament to what we believe the world should be. We are proclaiming through prayer what the kingdom of God is about.
So, why pray? We will talk about that this Sunday in the context of the story of Lydia, a woman who is prayed over by Peter and raised from the dead. In the meantime remember that the power of prayer might just be life giving for someone around you. Maybe you don't raise them from the dead, but perhaps you assure them that the presence of God is in their midst, or offer the assurance that Jesus' love is stronger than death, or maybe give them the courage to pray just like you.
So don't be afraid to pray, wherever you are.
Be a witness this week,
PS. If you would like to share a story of prayer with me, I'd love to hear them, just send me an email!