Polly and Digory are on an adventure with a horse who has just been given wings by Aslan. They stop for the night in a nice little meadow and find that they have not properly prepared for a journey such as this one as they have no foodstuffs or other provisions of the sort.
"I am hungry," said Digory.
"Well, tuck in," said Fledge, taking a big mouthful of grass. Then he raised his head, still chewing and with bits of grass sticking out on each side of his mouth like whiskers, and said, "Come on, you two. Don't be shy. There's plenty for us all."
"But we can't eat grass," said Digory.
"Hm, h'm," said Fledge, speaking with his mouth full. "Well-- h'm-- don't know quite what you'll do then. Very good grass too."
Polly and Digory stared at one another in dismay. "Well, I do think someone might have arranged about our meals," said Digory.
"I'm sure Aslan would have, if you'd asked him," said Fledge.
"Wouldn't he know without being asked?" said Polly.
"I've no doubt he would," said the Horse (still with his mouth full). "But I've a sort of idea he likes to be asked."
-The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis
Ross and I have started listening to audio books as we drive since there is a good 15 minute drive from here to even the closest destinations we generally drive to, and often much more than that. We check them out of the library, and we have all enjoyed enriching our lives with fun stories and good literature. Lately we have been listening to the Chronicles of Narnia.
When I heard this quote, it struck a major chord with me. It reminded me of a very important aspect of prayer that I had been forgetting as of late.
I am a pretty good prayer (person who prays) I think. I pray daily with sincerity, and I find a great deal of comfort in my daily communions with deity. I like to think I have a pretty good relationship with the one who receives and answers these prayers, and that has led me to know some pretty intimate details about His nature.
For instance, He has a great sense of humor, and enjoys a nice joke with comedic timing. He has experienced pains and sorrows beyond belief, and yet he has full compassion and sympathy for me and my petty little trials. He knows what I can become.
Among these things that I have learned about the nature of God is that He doesn't need to hear prayers in order to know what needs we lie in need of. He is omnipotent and all-knowing and all that jazz. These prayers we make for our needs are not for us to remind Him of what we stand in need of, but rather for us to humble ourselves enough to call upon God and invite Him into a place of honor and power in our lives.
Sometimes, as awesome a prayer as I am, I forget that. I forget that He likes to be asked. He wants me to remember him in all things.
Sometimes I start to feel a little ignored and impatient when really, the problem is that I have ceased to pray for all the little specific things that I have come to see as granted and ordinary- just like Polly and her food.
God knows I need rest.
He knows I want peace in my home.
He is aware that a bi-weekly paycheck certainly comes in handy when our bills are due (that budget thing was causing some mild stress for us). He KNOWS.
He knows, and he is willing to grant them to us, but we need to stop feeling entitled to those items and begin asking for them.
Fortunately, He knows me well- far better than I know Him, and He made sure to send me a little reminder through a very personal and clever way. I made the needed changes, and have since been blessed with the rest, assurance of a paycheck, and patience I was seeking.
(Have I mentioned how much I love C.S. Lewis? If you haven't read those books, do so immediately, and thank me later!)