Do I Pray? Part Two - My Prayers

When I was in second grade, I had my First Holy Communion. Someone in my class asked about praying after we receive communion. The nun, whose name I cannot remember now, said that she has a simple prayer for after communion. She first thanks God for all of her blessings. Then she asks God to forgive her for her sins. Then she would pray her intentions. That is when she asked God to bless people and for things she needed help with.

This simple prayer has been the basis of most of my prayer life. It was the prayer I would say before bed for many years. It was the prayer I would say in church. It was the prayer I prayed during the moment of silence in high school. It is the prayer I use to today when there is a moment I feel like praying. I felt that these are things that I should be communicating with God about. This is a great prayer because it can be short as three lines or you could spend hours praying everything in your life with God.

There is something about this prayer that has informed my view of God. I think the order of the prayer is perfect. The first thing I want to do is thank God. No matter where my life is, I always have many things to be thankful for. When I was little I used to spend a long time on this part of the prayer. I will admit that I think that I am a sinner. I know I am not all I can be in the eyes of God. I know that praying intentions are an odd idea. No matter what you ask for, you could be greedy. It is almost a contradiction.

I have a strange relationship with prayer. Jeremy asked me if I hear God when I pray. I told him that I do not. As I wrote yesterday, Jeremy thinks he hears the Voice of God when he prays. I know that he was not being literal. In the past I have talked to people who say they hear God or feel God when they pray. I never trust people who tell me this. I have never heard God or felt God as I prayed. I have felt God at other times, just now while I was trying to talk to him. I feel that people who hear God are either lying to me or lying to themselves. It always seems to be the least balanced people who tell me they hear God.

For a long time, starting right after I got out of college, I mainly prayed for one thing. I would pray to God and ask him for more faith. I felt like my faith was weak and gave me no comfort. I would see other people who looked like they were getting something out of their faith. I would respect these people, but I would also be jealous. I would ask God to touch my heart. I would pray so receive comfort from my Faith.

Since that time I have drifted further away from the church. In many ways I have also drifted further away from God also. With that being the case I do not feel that God answered that prayer. He might have. God might have given me a better understanding of him and myself. It just does not feel that way to me.

For the past several months I have prayed for two things most of the time. I pray for guidance and I pray for God to show me the path he wants me to take. As I wrote yesterday, in the last six months I have read a lot about Islam. There are a couple ideas in Islam that really appeal to me. There are also other ideas that I have my doubts about. When I was reading about Islam I was afraid that I was running into something huge without any idea of my own motivations. This is when I asked God to revel the path he wants me to take. My interest in Islam has cooled in the past couple of months. I guess that God has set some kind of path out for me.

Praying for guidance is a has been very important to me lately. I ask God to guide me and to guide other people. I think this is very important. Asking God for guidance is also very easy. I am not sure if it is being answered, but it makes me slow down and think before I decide to do things. I think it makes me go over my decisions before I act.

After all this I can say that I do believe in God. I am not sure that my vision of God is correct or not. I think there is a higher power that created the universe. I can say that I believe in God even if my faith is weak at times. I think right now I am going to say my prays before going to bed tonight.


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