Sunday, February 28, 2010

Spiritual Sunday- Dad, are you still there?

The Power of Personal Prayer

Today was yet another wrestle with Sissy.  I used to scoff at others who make the same old stale joke of having kids when you are young...blah  blah  blah.  I no longer scoff.  I'm freakin tired. 
The usual morning battles of eating a decent breakfast, not throwing every toy in the house, and adding in potty training all made the idea of attending church a little overwhelming.  However, knowing that the times I find myself making an excuse to miss church are the times that I need to be there most.  Today turned out to be no exception.

Luka woke up ill (too much Leatherby's?  He's such a party animal), and since it was too late to find a substitute for his Sunday School class, I offered to pinch hit.
I can usually whip something up, teaching comes easy to me.  It's about the only thing that does, and since I knew the kids in his class, I figured it would be fun.

After taking Sissy potty, and safely depsositing her in her nursery class, I made my way towards Luka's group of kids.  I had read through the lesson material during a few quiet minutes while Splenda had Sissy out in the foyer during Sacrament meeting, got the gist, and had prepared my thoughts of what to include in the time I would have to teach.

Our discussion centered on personal prayer.  We talked about why, how and when we should pray.  Pretty standard answers.  We used some every day experiences to relate to applying the principles and then I wrapped up with a story from the lesson manual that touched me on a very deep level.

It told of a young girl named Stephanie who was babysitting for a family in her neighborhood.  She was doing great and felt comfortable while she was caring for the children, but once they had gone to bed for the evening, she became frightened.  The nighttime creaks of an unfamiliar house and listening to neighbors arguing made her uncomfortable and uneasy.  She was fearful and wondered what to do. 
The thought occured to her that she could call her father who was a firefighter.  He would still be awake and she could get a hold of him on his private line at the firestation.

She was able to reach her father and poured out her fears to him.  He tried to calm her down and instructed her to lie down on the couch, try to relax and rest.  She was too scared to do that.  He assured her some more by explaining that he would stay on the line with her, until the parents returned.

She followed his guidance, lied down on the couch and kept the phone to her ear.  Over the next two hours, she would find herself bolting awake out of fear and calling out, "Dad are you still there?".
He would gently answer her yes, never once hanging up

Of course, by the time I was done, I was in tears.  But then again, I kind of roll that way.  When I feel the Spirit, I'm a crier.  And in front of these 12 year old's no less, but to me the analogy of this story is powerful.

Life on this earth is often frightening.  Many times, I am afraid, uncertain, and need reassurance.  My Father in Heaven is there, on the other line, all the time.  I simply need to place the call, share my fears and concerns, and then relax knowing that he won't hang up.
I thought a little deeper about the telephone comparison.  I live and die by my cell phone.  If I have forgotten it, I feel like I have forgotten my right arm.  I use it to make sure my loved ones are safe, to check on the whereabouts of my children, to chat,  keep in touch and strenthen bonds with friends and family on a daily basis. 

Personal Prayer is much the same thing.  It's our line of communication to our Father.  Our way of checking in, letting Him know we are safe, our whereabouts, chatting to stay in touch and strengthing our bond.  I can no more leave my home in the morning without my "call" to my Father in Heaven than I can my cell phone.

I shared those feelings with those cute 12 year old's.  I think they might have been a little freaked out that Luka's mom was bawling.  Well, maybe the boys were, the girls are used to it from YW.  And while I have no idea if they felt the same Spirit that I did, I do know  that I walked out of classroom 1 a little better.  More committed to being a better daughter of God.  Better at staying in touch with Him.  Better at relying more on my Father for help. 

"Dad, are you still there?"      
Yes, He always will be. 
This I know.


Loralee and the gang... said...

Beautiful. I know I can always count on your Spiritual Sundays for a little extra on sunday evenings...and thank you for that!

glittersmama said...

Thank you for that often-needed reminder.

DeNae said...

Beautiful. You're awesome.

linda said...

I only have one word to say about this post...BEAUTIFUL!

Now I'm crying too...

Merri Ann said...

Thank you for a great start to my day ...

tammy said...

I love this. Funny how the lessons/talks we give, often help us the most. I'm sure the class felt of the Spirit while you were teaching. That's just how you are.

Pedaling said...

mormon kids are used to crying adults....

beautiful post- what a blessing to have prayer- a father in heaven who is always there- and a testimony that it's true.

Jewls said...

I love this! What a beautiful post, thanks M-Cat!

Lara said...

This is wonderful. It really is such a perfect analogy. Our Father in Heaven is always there, waiting on the line, no matter what.

Thank you!

Mae Rae said...

There are many times in my life that I make that call. Today, while I was reading your post I started to cry. I am not sure why, maybe the joy in the story and maybe part of the sadness of my dad being a firefighter and no longer able to take my calls. Either way, thank you! You have put Him in my hectic morning and I so appreciate you.

Sue said...

luv that story..Thanks for sharing

Gloria (The Mamafamilias) said...

If it makes you feel any better, I have a hard time getting through the chorus of the new Primary song for this year every time we go through it. I'll be a basket case by the time the Program comes along.

How thankful I am to know He is there. Life is a tough deal sometimes, and I can't imagine having to live through it without knowing My Heavenly Father is there.

Aren't we so blessed to be able to teach so that we can learn.


wendy said...

OK, crap, it's kinda hard to type with tears in your eyes. What a lovely story.
I have always said my personnal prayers. I NEED to know that HE is always there.
sometimes I "feel" like I am on Call Waiting, cause I often feel unworthy and HE'll get around to me later.
But in my heart of hearts, I know that is not so.
Just like my own earthly father, My Savior would never leave me "hanging"

Just ME the MOM said...

I love this! Such a beautiful analogy and it's just how I feel currently in my life. So many times each day - I have to reach out and find my Heavenly Father still there. And I am so grateful that he is . . .