Words of Hope: The Discipline of Prayer

Dad died two months ago. It feels like it just happened and conversely that it happened long ago. Dad’s 12 year battle with cancer carried so many thoughts and questions about when his time would be up. It became exhausting to live in the space of unknowing. I think it was especially burdensome on my Mom as the caretaker for these many years. 

But my Mom is very tough, and I know that her ability to navigate the tremendous roller coaster of cancer and caring for my Dad came in her dedication to pray and meet with God every morning. Mom is an early riser, and each day, she spends an hour reading scripture, going through Our Daily Bread Devotional, other devotionals, and praying. 

I remember her commitment to this routine my entire life. As a young girl, I would wake up early and find her sitting by the fireplace praying. Dad prayed all the time throughout the day. He would sometimes wake early and pray with Mom, but Mom was without fail at her devotional spot each morning. This legacy of prayer is a gift to me and my girls, who have seen firsthand how crucial prayer is for our family. They all watched grandpa pray through the day and have seen grandma (aka glama) praying in the early morning. 

When I have a rude tone of voice, get anxious, or seem troubled, my girls say to me, “Mom, go and pray.” They know prayer changes me and heals me, and without it, I am not the person or mother I aspire to be. I am thankful they can see the difference. I am grateful prayer changes me, and the girls understand this. 

Prayer and time with God were not weapons in my family for sanctimonious living but the foundation of courageous, compassionate, hopeful ways to overcome difficulty and live a better life.

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” – Ephesians 6:18