We have a nightly tradition with Nathan. After his bath, after he's in his pajamas, after he has some milk, after we brush his teeth, after we read a Bible story... we ask him who he would like to pray for. We don't prompt him, and we pray for whoever he says. Usually, it's Mommy or Daddy or Elmo... but last night, he said he wanted to pray for Jay.
Jay is the pastor at our church, and he and his family are good friends of ours. But his name hasn't shown up in Nathan's prayers before. So we prayed for Jay. And later, after Nathan was in bed, I started thinking about how many times I pray for our pastor. Especially on Saturday nights... the night before he brings us all a message from God. And I had to admit that I don't often remember to include Jay... or my Sunday School teacher... or our deacons... or even my husband who also will be serving the church the next day.
Tonight it was back to business as usual (we prayed for the Donut Man and Lila)... but I realized that Nathan has the right idea. In his own child-like way, Nathan prays from a place that too many of us mature adults have forgotten. In that moment, when we ask who he wants to pray for, he says whatever name comes from his heart, knowing that there are no wrong answers. It is always ok to pray... even for Elmo. I have to wonder if God brought Jay to Nathan's spirit last night because He knew Nathan was listening to Him... and I wasn't.
Tonight... I pray that God makes me more like Nathan... someone who listens to His spirit whispering to mine...someone who prays from the overflow of my heart.