"The Essential Guide to Passionate Prayer" by Jason Mitich
When Plymouth Church announced their Six Practices of Faith I found one practice especially compelling - Passionate Prayer. Like many, after hearing the list I questioned my own prayer. Did I incorporate the passion that our church strived for? My essential question - was I good at prayer? Admittedly, I am not good at many things – knitting, basic mechanical tasks, Salsa dancing, growing hair on the top of my head (this list is endless) – but I truly wanted to assess my prayer and find ways to improve.
Ultimately, I decided to research. After exhaustive digging (Wikipedia, Celine Dion lyrics), I fortunately discovered help. I discovered The Essential Guide to Passionate Prayer. The eight foolproof ways to enhance your prayer. The following is the list:
1. Always stretch before and after prayer. Spiritual scholars generally recommend warming up with a few Halleluiah’s and cooling down with five to ten Amen’s.
2. Dress comfortably. It’s hard to talk to God in tight pants.
3. No matter how difficult, no matter how stressful, make prayer part of your daily routine. For example, I normally start the day by calmly praying that my alarm clock will immediately turn off and never ring again for the rest of eternity.
4. Have a conversation with God and listen. God is not your mother-in-law, and even if She was, it just might help someday to listen to the fifteen reasons why she loves soup.
5. Always seek a peaceful, tranquil space for prayer, preferably one with a background sound of waterfalls and/or white doves rhythmically cooing. If no waterfalls or doves are available, put in a DVD for your kids and run the garbage disposal.
6. Realize and embrace the power and benefits of passionate prayer. Benefits that, according to most experts, cannot be cut by Governor Scott Walker.
7. Make a genuine effort to open up and truly share your emotions with God. While natural for the male gender, this sharing of emotions can be enhanced for females through local community college courses and white wine.
8. Laugh with God. I have a feeling He will think that you’re pretty funny. I am scared of many things. Chickens are one of these things. Not the cooked kind, those are delicious. I am referring to the kind on farms. The kind with tiny heads and wild jerky movement patterns. I just don’t trust them. They have short attention spans, they don’t pay taxes, and I rarely see them in church.