A Family Prays
Lord, you are the God who saves me; day and night I cry
out to you. May my prayer come before
you; turn your ear to my cry.
Dad’s mind was on Saturday because he considered it to be our
Sabbath Day. On this day, as soon as we awoke,
he summoned us to pray. The kids all gathered
in the living room and knelt. Dad would
then pray with us from his heart.
“Almighty and Everlasting God, we humbly ask you to continue to bless
our family. We are most thankful for the
many blessings you have showered on us. We
are especially grateful for our health, food, and shelter. Although, we do not have much, we’re most
“We humbly ask you to continue to bless our work, and especially
the efforts of mom, who does so much. We
thank you for granny Sarah, Edwin, Squee, and Boyie for all they do. Thank you for our family, and the kids, who
are in school. Help us to have joyful
and kind hearts.
“Please continue to guide us in having a loving home. Be with our neighbors and friends. And help us so that we would view the strangers
we meet as angels of peace.”
I always thought when I heard this prayer that some
strangers could well be devils in disguise.
It was dad’s way of helping us see the good in people.
Dad continued, “Help us to envision living in your Heavenly Kingdom,
forever and ever, amen!” Soon he began
chanting, “Miracles, miracles, God of miracles, miracles, miracles, God of
I was always wondered about dad’s repetitive
chanting. It was his belief that all
things were miracles. In discussing these
beliefs, he would say, “Show me anything, and I’ll see a miracle.” As a child I never understood when he said
even bad things could be miracles. Soon
I thought Christ dying on the cross was the epitome of evil, but look at all
the good that came from this bad act.
Again, we sang, Jesus Christ, son of the living God, have
mercy on us!”
“Jesus Christ, son of the living God, have mercy on us!” We
For dad, his chant was adequate in asking God to forgive us
of our sins. As he knelt before us, he
was saying, “God’s in control. God is in
our soul.” We repeated, “God is in control.
God is in our soul.”
Undoubtedly, dad believed God was the Master of our
destiny. We each had a soul that ought
to be guided by his purpose. This was
what he taught us. Soon, dad raised his
eyes toward the ceiling and said, “God is the way, the truth, and light. God is our delight.”
We repeated, “God is the way, the truth, and light. God is our delight.”
Dad’s religious fervor was overwhelming. As we knelt some of us shifted from side to
side trying to make ourselves comfortable on the wooden floors. But dad however was oblivious to this
discomfort. I wondered if such prayers
had anything to do with the people who we later became in life. In confidence dad persisted, “With God all
things are possible. With God all things
This saying reflected
his beliefs that all things whether big or small God was able to transform
according to his purpose.
Again, dad implored God’s forgiveness. “God, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.”
Humbly we responded, “God, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.”
The family’s favorite prayers followed, “The 23rd Psalm,”
“Our Father,” and “Hail Mary.” Dad then
concluded the devotion with “May God’s peace, be always with you. Amen!” And we all responded, “May God’s peace, be
always with you. Amen!”
Often, I noticed some of my younger brothers and sisters had
trouble following dad’s prayers. The
responses they blurted out were convoluted as they stumbled over their
words. The older kids giggled and we
received a warning look from dad. He yelled,
“This was no time to fool around.”
Once the devotion was over, the family returned the furniture
to its proper place. But while we prayed
mom was in the kitchen preparing breakfast.
As soon as she entered the living room, mom asked dad how we did. It was her belief, “A family who prayed would
be together.” She was convinced that we
were all members of the Church of Christ, and liked the living room to be
considered as a place of worship. As
soon as the prayers ended dad kissed each of us on the forehead before leaving
the room. After breakfast was served the
kids did house work, and made plans for church on Sunday.
Post a Comment