I know how to settle myself into worship. I know what it is like to be really centered and in that place of expectant worship. And I have tons of informal conversations throughout the day with my version of God. But how do you pray?
I don't even know how to ask for help or guideance in my everyday life from regular folks. How can I possibly do it in my spiritual life? At night I try to pray in a way I began imagining as a child after reading Laura Ingalls Wilder books. But I really feel that sometimes formal prayer is all about wording. Like the saying, "Becareful what you ask for." So it is with prayer. I feel that if I don't word things just right I will indeed get what I am praying for, but not in the ways I had conceived of it.
I am a big believer in the idea that we can ask all we want for something, but the steps we take to work towards that which we pray, through the way we live our lives, is equally important. As a child I used to pray for world peace...which is a really complex goal that has many intricacies, it needs a combination of prayer and personal action. Now I feel like the big stuff, like world peace and a cleaner, safer environment are the backdrop to my conversations with God. God knows my heart, perhaps better than I do, but it is up to me to address issues weighing on me with God. By asking for help and asking God to take up certain things I can let some of it go to do better Works. Granted, I have been only asking for help with two things for many weeks now. Mostly, its because I haven't gotten the wording right...I am terribly fearful at what will happen if we can't make these things work, God and I. I know I should give them over to his wisdom and powers, but the most important one is something I don't know how to give up...and that is the crux of the issue. It is something that I have little control over, yet the thought of living without it is heartbreaking. And the worst of it is, I do not know what steps I can take myself to help God's plan. But I am going to keep praying...because I am not ready to accept a life without the object of my desire.