Numb, I run. It’s cold. Lifting my hand to my mouth, I breathe. Fleeting warmth fills my frigid face only to leave more quickly than it came.
Again, I begin. Every day like unto the one before.
God, hear me. God, hear me. God, hear me.
Broken prayers flow like an ebbtide. Somewhere between “thank you” and “why?” my doubt begins. Why pray anyway? He already knows.
Are you disappointed, God? Of course you’re not. Disappointment has to do with expectation. You never expect what won’t materialize. But me, I do. I am. So today I come. My sabbatical is over. Today I’m here to do more than listen – more than drench myself in your wildly fascinating Word. I think I’m ready. I’m ready to ask of you.
No, I wasn’t there when you placed the stars and filled the seas. I’m not looking for a logical explanation. No. I want to know why I find you so hard to believe. Where did the days of awaiting anxious answers to my most amazing imaginations go? Where is my joy? How did I lose you? Where am I?
The tide flows in again. It’s just me reasoning with myself now. All I can arrange in my confusion is wrapped up in that one stinging word – disappointment.
But, no. I must ask. I’m ready. God, I want you. I need you. I miss you. Please come. Hear me. Answer me. Run with me. Talk to me.
I look at my phone and see a photograph of a rock engraved with the words, “I prayed for you today.” I see a red bird in winter. Letting go of my long-standing hesitation, I finally, fearfully, let down my guard, cowering.
I hear you, Lord. I see you. I know you are faithful. Teach me how to pray again. Please don’t let me pray for that which you don’t intend to give. I beg you not to allow me to believe for that which you will not provide. So many prayers wrapped in my tears and sealed with my faith have fallen to the ground silent.
Daddy didn’t come back. Mommy isn’t whole. Love is pain. Life has taken it’s toll.
Forgive me, Father. Teach me how to pray. Stop me from believing promises you never made. Arrest my selfish motives. Make me broken. Could I even be more broken? So be it.
Don’t disappoint me. Be beautiful to my eyes again. Cause me to make you look beautiful. I love you more than life.
With knowing eyes and a slightly upturned lip he repeats the very same back to me.