August 31, 2005

Isaiah 58:9 – Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. (NIV)

"Why? Why do I have to?" I remember asking this question when I was a child. Back then, my mother would smile at me patiently and wait by the side of my bed, reminding me that it was time to say my prayers. On a cold winter night when the warm bed looked extra inviting and I was tempted to rush through the many "God bless" parts of my prayer, my mother would remind me I was talking to God, the King of the universe, and it wasn't polite to hurry away.

Over the years, I've learned the value of this time spent talking with God at the end of my day. Although I must admit I've gotten away from the practice of kneeling to say my prayers by my bedside, I do pray regularly. Sometimes I find a quiet corner where God and I can have an uninterrupted chat. Other times I'll sit by a stream or walk the beach and talk to God as the rippling brook or the bounding waves make music in the background. But some of my prayers reflect the age and times in which I live. On those occasions when I can't sleep and I feel led to pray for someone or some need, I'll get up in the night and turn on my laptop computer, opening it just enough so that I can put my hands on the keyboard, but not so far as to allow the light to glare throughout the darkened room. Alone, in the solitude of those night hours, I'll close my eyes and type my prayer. No, I don't send God an e-mail, but I do know this: whether we send an e-mail prayer or a knee-mail prayer, God hears our prayers.

Prayer: Dear God, thank You for being available to hear our prayers, no matter how or when we call on You. Amen.

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Elaine Ingalls Hogg <>
Smiths Creek, New Brunswick, Canada

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