I can’t tell you how many times I’ve uttered words similar to this.
Someone shares something personal, something hard. “I’ll pray for you” I say.
Someone knows someone who has health problems. “I’ll be praying” I say.
But often, I don’t follow through.
My words are empty, a platitude, a cliche. It seems like a good thing to say in a situation. It seems (and is) a good thing to do for other people. It seems (and often is) the only thing I can do.
But I don’t do it.
This week one of the boys I work with in my preschool class is absent because once again his baby sister is in the hospital. She had heart surgery and has gotten every complication since then. It is a scary situation. It breaks my heart. I feel for him, for his parents, for the little girl.
And so I say “I’ll pray for you”.
I’ve actually never said those words to someone I barely know. To an acquaintance. I teach his son and that is the extent of our relationship.
But I felt this family, this girl, needed to know they are not alone.
So I said it.
And then a few nights later I was thinking about this little girl, wondering how she was doing, thinking about what I could do for her. And it hit me:
I didn’t do the one thing I said I would do.
I was thinking about it, but not praying about it.
My words, especially those words, need to mean something. They need to be more then empty words.
I believe in the power of prayer. I believe that God hears prayers. I believe that God answers prayers.
So it’s time to put some action behind my words.
It’s time to pray.