Someone near and dear to me recently commented that she didn’t think God was hearing her prayers, so she and her husband were going to pray louder. At the same time, I was working on my meditation skills; essentially I was learning to pray more softly. Which one of us is right?
Of course, we both are. And the key is that we have to find the communication method that comes most directly from our heart. That will be different for you, me, your mother, and Pope Benedict XVI. In God’s masterpiece called creation, each of us was created to play a unique role. Therefore it makes perfect sense that our approach to Him is unique as well. But those approaches must be as genuine, as heartfelt, as we can make them.
Heartfelt is not always cheerful and joyous. In fact, there have been a few occasions when I would have sworn God ignored me until I was spitting, sputtering mad at Him. Some of my best conversations with the One who is Love were anything but loving. But, believe me, those prayers were coming straight out of my wounded, aching heart! And He heard me. Sometimes more slowly than I wanted, but He did hear, and He did provide an answer.
God loves the children He created. He knows the “real” us. And that’s the person He wants to hear from. Whether we are making a joyful noise that rattles the church rafters, or sitting on a mat staring into space, the prayer God wants to hear is the one that our heart needs to say.