Sunday, April 29, 2012

My Mommy Tribute: P is for Prayer

My mother was a woman of very strong faith. While she didn't wear her Christianity on her sleeve like so many do, she always let you know that God would take care of whatever was ailing you. She was fond of spouting off cliches and old sayings. The last one that she repeated ad nauseum was "When it rains, it pours." But she would also say things like, "When God closes a door, he always opens a window."

There are three particular prayers that stand out in my mind when I think of my childhood. The first is The Lord's Prayer. Like a good Lutheran girl, I memorized it and all of our other recitations at a young age. When we switched to a Presbyterian church when I was in the 6th grade, I had a hard time remembering to say "debts/debtors" instead of "trespasses/those who trespass against us." (Honestly, I still do, even as an adult.)

The second one was shared before meals around the dining room table. "Come Lord Jesus, be Thou our guest. And let these gifts to us be blessed. Amen." It was our standard prayer until we became adults. By that point, my sister was in seminary and could come up with other words on the spot.

The third one was used any time that I had a nightmare or was scared during a thunderstorm. Mom would either come into my bedroom and hold my hand, or have me tuck into bed with her in my parents' room. She would always make me say, "Jesus, Dear, be real near, for nothing then shall I need fear." It's very short, but to the point. And I always felt better when I said it. Every now and then, I find myself uttering it, even as an adult.

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