By Peola Hicks
A Two-Word Prayer
I received a letter today from someone who told me that they were not sure if they were praying right.
As I read the letter it was apparent that the concern was with how long the prayer should be and how often the same words could be used. The letter reminded me of a conversation that I had one day with two of my colleagues.
While attending a day of prayer event I was having a conversation with two of my male colleagues who were very well dressed. One of them made a comment to the other saying “That is a very nice suit you have on, I like it.”
The one wearing the nice suit responded by first brushing his shoulders and then saying how there was cat hair all over it. It was as if he could not believe that he really looked nice or was worthy of a nice compliment.
After hearing the dialogue, I chimed in and said, “Just say thank you.” He then said “Thank you, Peola, you should be writing and giving etiquette points rather than prayer points. I laughed out loud, but later thought that was a great idea.
So I decided to combine prayer and etiquette into this note today, because I know that I sometimes struggle with a proper response to God. When the Lord does nice things for me or gives me a compliment, I don’t always say "thank you." "Thank you" is the way that I can show how grateful and appreciative I am for what someone else has done for me, but maybe there are times that I take things for granted and act as if “thank you” is not necessary.
I don’t always say "thank you" to God in the morning when I see the beautiful sunshine. I don’t always wake up and say “thank you” when I find that I have the strength to put my clothes on by myself and get into the shower. I don’t always say “thank you” when I find that my family is well and we slept during the night without hurt, harm or danger.
As I was responding to the letter that I mentioned earlier, I realized that it is not how long the prayer is that counts, because prayer comes from the heart. It could be long or it could be short–only two words, as simple as “thank you” can be a prayer.
I have even more than what I have already mentioned to say “thank you” for. I can thank God that I don’t have to carry the burden of my own sin. I can offer it to God on a daily basis and rely upon what Jesus has done for me. I am assured of this from the words of 2 Corinthians 5:21, For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
Lord, I thank You that I have been made the righteousness of God in Christ. This is a gift that I have been given. I certainly could not have earned it, and in my own self, I am not worthy of it and don’t understand it. Whether I understand it or not, I know it is true. I am in right standing with God My prayer point today is for myself and that is to make sure that I practice what I preach. That is proper etiquette and something to pray about.
Thank you for reading Peola’s Prayer Points. God Bless You!
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Rev. Dr. Peola C. Hicks manages all prayer, volunteer and partner programs for OurPrayer. OurPrayer is a Christ centered ministry that receives and prays for over 750,000 requests on an annual basis through the web, phone and Facebook. Peola is an ordained minister and has a profile on Facebook as Peola’s Prayer Points.