The phrase "being desperate for the Lord" is pretty commonplace in the contemporary Christian's lexicon. I know it's meant to describe the hunger we should have for a relationship with the Lord but that word...desperate...is full of despair, a place where hope is dissolving faster than you can replace it. And to be sure, I've been desperate for the Lord on many, many occasions. As a child, praying in the midst of parents who thrived on chaos. As a lonely teenage girl, feeling broken hearted over misplaced love. My dear boy was an answer to one of those prayers. The sad, despondent prayers of a grieving mother who had seen her first child retreat to Heaven before he drew his first breath. My second child, my dear boy, was the embodiment of Hannah's prayers in the temple, begging for a son. I knew her heart. I felt that desperation. And when that boy came whimpering into the world, I saw my prayers answered.
Soon after I had that dear boy, I got the news that sweet girl would be joining our family. I never prayed for a daughter. How could I love another child, a girl, the way I loved my boys? But soon I longed to meet her and when she was born, I realized she was a piece of my heart I didn't know I was missing. I saw an answer to an unprayed prayer. And that is when a little of the desperation started to fade.
Our family went through very trying times after these two babies joined our family. I shed enough tears to fill an ocean and said every pleading prayer I could think of to just make it through those days. And I did. Every single situation has passed. Every mountain, climbed. Every rocky road, with no end in sight, travelled. And it finally dawned on me that I didn't need the desperation.
My pleading and crying and frantic searches for the Lord's presence weren't needed. Think of your own little child having such a tantrum to be fed as you are in the midst of preparing their dinner. You know their need before they even feel the first hunger pang and nothing about their fit pitching makes their desire to eat more or less important to you. You WILL sate their hunger in due time.
So while I am not wailing at every turn, I do pray. Almost constantly. For as long as I can remember, I have had a running dialogue with God going in my head. If you see me at the grocery store or standing in line at the post office, know I am silently praying/conversing with my Heavenly Father. "Hey God, give me patience to not yell at these kids." "God, PLEASE heal my back. It's killing me." "How is Jennifer doing? I pray she is feeling better. Please heal her." "God, I've been asking for a lot lately. Can I just say thank you? And tell you how much I appreciate you? I'd like to give you a hug right about now." And so when I'm met with circumstances I'd rather not deal with, I'm praying. Sometimes I'm crying but I'm never desperate.
And I was fully reminded of this last night. I was confronting an issue that really made me uncomfortable. I had been praying about it a while and it finally just overflowed to where I couldn't ignore it anymore. My concerns were met with positivity but also some hurt and sadness. It was late and the conversation ended somewhat unresolved. I was filled with a lot of dread and turned to the Internet to find a blog post I'd read about women judging each other. I found it and it made my heart ache. Female friendships have always been so fragile in my life, save a few. And I thought about how that hurt built up like a wall around me and what was so wrong with me that I couldn't just GET IT RIGHT.
And then that sweet little angel in the picture up top came into my room, all sleepy eyed. "Can I get in bed with you, Mommy?" I hadn't even prayed the prayer and God served my needs. As that precious girl curled up next to me, I saw myself and her as one person. So tender hearted and fierce. So precious to our Creator. If she had a hard time making friends, wouldn't I just gently guide her and wipe her eyes? Would I ever blame her or find fault with her sweet spirit?
I finally fell into a rather fitful sleep but feeling assured that joy comes with the morning. And it did. In the form of breakfast from a friend, a funny message from my sister, reaching out to a far away friend, and a card from sweet girl that read, "I love you more than you could imagen."
Amen to the unprayed prayer, honey. Amen.