Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Talking, Doing, and Talking Again

There was a woman who gave a lesson on Sunday about Prayer. I sort of thought that it would be similar to the many lessons that I'd heard before about prayer. But it was, in fact, a very good lesson, and I heard some things about prayer that I hadn't really thought of in that way before. (I'm sure it was in large part to the teacher, right, Mary?)

Anyway, she based the lesson on this talk by David Bednar. There is a part of the talk that talks about how God created everything spiritually before it was created temporally. Then he said " In a similar way, meaningful morning prayer is an important element in the spiritual creation of each day—and precedes the temporal creation or the actual execution of the day. Just as the temporal creation was linked to and a continuation of the spiritual creation, so meaningful morning and evening prayers are linked to and are a continuation of each other.

There may be things in our character, in our behavior, or concerning our spiritual growth about which we need to counsel with Heavenly Father in morning prayer. After expressing appropriate thanks for blessings received, we plead for understanding, direction, and help to do the things we cannot do in our own strength alone. During the course of the day, we keep a prayer in our heart for continued assistance and guidance.

We notice during this particular day that there are occasions where normally we would have a tendency to speak harshly, and we do not; or we might be inclined to anger, but we are not. We discern heavenly help and strength and humbly recognize answers to our prayer. Even in that moment of recognition, we offer a silent prayer of gratitude.

At the end of our day, we kneel again and report back to our Father. We review the events of the day and express heartfelt thanks for the blessings and the help we received. We repent and, with the assistance of the Spirit of the Lord, identify ways we can do and become better tomorrow. Thus our evening prayer builds upon and is a continuation of our morning prayer. And our evening prayer also is a preparation for meaningful morning prayer."

I think that this could apply to anyone, even if you didn't pray. Just the fact of thinking about how you would like your day to go, perhaps even writing it down, and then keeping those thoughts in your head throughout the day, and then at the end of the day, think again about how your plans for the day went. For those of you who do pray, this would involve what the speaker said - Praying and talking to God about what you would like to do that day, how you would like to react, what you would like to accomplish, etc., then keeping a prayer in your heart throughout the day and keep those thoughts in your mind, and then in the evening, pray again and talk to God about how you did.

For me, it makes so much sense, but I haven't really thought about praying/thinking in that specific way before. Sometimes, for someone who is supposedly focusing on Simple Stuff, I miss some of the simple things to do. Ah well, it gives me stuff to keep working on - for the rest of my life, I'm sure.

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