17 February 2009

Talking About Prayer

Nadia and I had coffee this evening before bible study and kicked it around with a few notable digressions.

It may be that prayer is indefinable. Unexplainable. True without being a fact. As we like to say in the law, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Causality may be overrated.

It is pretty easy to agree on what prayer is not - God doesn't appear to grant intercessory prayers based on sheer numbers that much seems obvious. You can't gang up on God or stuff the ballot box. Sometimes prayer seems to work and you hope its not just the law of large numbers in operation. Probably praying for negative things doesn't work - all the people I wished dead seem to be alive and well and still mucking things up for the rest of us.

But there is something when a group prays. I see that every Tuesday night at bible study. Irreverence is put aside. Heads are bowed. Sarcastic lutherans turn pious. And something happens. Something undeniable. I know that God hears these prayers - the sense of presence is palpable. Holiness. The unfolding mystery is about what she does with them...and I'm hoping she does something useful, positive and good. Regardless, prayer is good for me - and changes me.

I didn't expect that Nadia would have all the answers, and she didn't, but I she fully understood the mystery of prayer.

And, for tonight, that was enough.


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