Tuesday, June 13, 2006

I've got a secret.

Not too long ago a seventh grader approached me after youth group. “Pastor Amanda,” she whispered nervously, “I really need to talk with you…privately.” As we walked down the hallway to my office I went through a mental list of what she could possibly have to share (eating disorders, divorce, suicide, etc.) We walked to my office and shut the door.

I braced myself for her news. She looked around nervously to make sure we were alone, and then she leaned her head in towards mine and whispered two words: “Prayer works.”

“What?”

“Prayer. It really works.”

I swallowed my surprise and asked her to explain. “I was having problems with someone, so I decided to pray about it every single day for a week. And we’re doing better now. Prayer works! It really works!”

I must confess, in the days that followed this exchange I had a patronizing spirit towards her. “Awww, sweet little mainline middle schooler just learned about the power of prayer."

And then I realized that I was having problems with a particular someone. I realized I hadn’t prayed about the situation. And so I prayed. I prayed for about a week—asking that God would help me to see things from his perspective.

At the end of the week I pulled the 7th grader aside. “Prayer works,” I whispered. She just smiled.