I love hearing my little girl, Emery, pray. Her prayers are often quite entertaining:
“Jesus, my mommy, my daddy, Emmy go potty on the big potty, daddy feel a little sick, Isaac, Mat, JoJo – he’s my best friend, Amen.”
“Jesus, Emmy go to bed, Emmy have breakfast tomorrow, Emmy food, Emmy apple juice, No! No juice! Emmy water, Doctor say ‘Drink lots of water,’ Amen.”
“Jesus, Emmy’s chicken, Emmy have a cow…later, play with all the kids later, mommy food, daddy food, Amen.”
“Jesus, Emmy’s juice, Emmy’s food, Emmy find a penny, amen.”
She does like to pray. I like that about her. Tonight, however, was the most significant prayer she’s ever prayed even though she doesn’t fully understand the weight of it. I was working on some graphic design out on the back porch and Emery and Jenn came out. Emery was supposed to be in bed, but she said she wanted to tell me something. She sat down in the chair in front of me and proceeded to tell me that she wanted Jesus to live in her heart. We talked about that and she said she wanted to pray.
The prayer was very simple and went something like this (with her repeating after me):
Dear Jesus, please come live in my heart. Help me to live for You, and obey my parents and You all the time. Help me to stay away from sin. Thank You for dying for me. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!
Judging by her response immediately afterward: “Man, I love this chair!” I don’t think she understood the weight of her words, but Jenn and I did. We looked at each other, and laughed, and smiled, and thanked God that we are able to lead our children to the Lord from such a young age!
To any skeptics out there: I know she doesn’t understand the concept of the Trinity (neither do I, fully) or know the difference between premillenialism and postmillenialism or really have an understanding of redemptive history, but she knows Who Jesus is and what He did, and that’s where it begins. My mom prayed with me in our front yard when I was 3. I was the same way then as Emery is now – very simple-minded and not a theologian, but I knew I wanted Jesus in me, so I asked. It was that simple. All I can say now is that Jesus answered that prayer. He’s in me. I still don’t have it all figured out, but He’s still working in me. I believe to this day that my simple 3-year old prayer is still being answered. I pray the same for my little girl(s)!
Jesus said that all we need is faith as simple as a child’s.
Thanks, Jesus, for making it that simple and forgive us for making it so complicated.