(From "Alcoholics Anonymous", Chapter 4, We Agnostics, p. 53)
My choice? I chose to believe that God is everything, that God "is". I have never altered that choice. The longer I believe God is everything, the more that belief is proven in my personal experiences and the greater my faith and trust grows.
I have developed a corollary belief. It is:
Either prayer works or it doesn't.
AND - I believe prayer works. The more I pray, the more I see God working situations out in my life that seem impossible and more than I can handle.
God brought me to Alcoholics Anonymous where I found sobriety. God supported and led me through a divorce that was very difficult for me and our children. God led me into a job that became a career and allowed me to grow within myself and provided for our material needs. God opened the doors to a new marriage. I watch my children grow in the love of God and firmly believe He watches over them. The constant in all these events has been the practice of prayer.
Today I continue to pray. Prayer in my life takes many forms. At church I enter the names of people I am praying for in a book that is taken up to the altar during the mass. I pray silently. I allow meditation to merge into prayer. I pray using candles.
When I pray with candles, each candle I light represents a prayer for a particular person, a group of people or specific situations. I pray as I light them. I reflect on the prayer in the flickering lights and I send the prayers to God in the smoke as I snuff each one out. I have described this before, but my revelation today was that I can also light these candles, pray, and send the prayers to God in my mind.
Just a thought - why not pray candles with me? We can do it anywhere and anytime. I have 11 candles (I have just added a 12th candle for Lou's Andrew) and I have lit them so often I remember what each one represents. What are your prayer concerns or requests? How many candles will you light? See them in your mind's eye. Light them. Pray. Blow them out and watch them float to God. I pray your efforts will be blessed.
(Photo credit: candles by simply firstname.lastname@example.org)