Prayer has always been a major part of my life. I remember kneeling next to my bed as a little girl to pray. I even loved when I was old enough to lead my family in our dinner prayers, which sometimes felt like a sermon because I got lost on tangents and just love talking (even to God)!
As a teen, I remember the whole “True Love Waits” message that was preached to us all. Save yourself for your future spouse. I also remember, briefly, learning to pray for your future spouse. And I have since then.
My first marriage fell apart. And I’m okay with that. I did pray for that person, but they just weren’t the right person. That person, however, got me to where I am.
I had that conversation with my boyfriend on one of our nightly walks around the neighborhood this week. I basically said, in not so many words, that it was a good thing because it brought me to Philly and brought me to him. If I hadn’t got married, if I hadn’t stayed in that marriage as long as I did, I wouldn’t have found Nick at just the right time.
The right time is a weird way to say it. I was in a place of feeling guilty, of heartbreak, and of loneliness. He was suffering the pain of losing his dad less than two months prior.
It seems like the worst time to find someone who is probably your soulmate, but it was the right time for us. I needed someone who could remind me that I could help take care of someone, while taking care of myself, and still be fiercely loved by that person.
While I’m not sure what all he needed (and still needs), I tried to be someone who loved him unconditionally, but someone who was also a sounding board and would tell him to be emotional, but also logical at the same time. We both needed each other in different ways.
It has absolutely not been a fairy-tale. We’ve had hard times, painful times, and even a bit of heartache. But we worked through it and have a really strong relationship.
One thing that I didn’t tell him for the longest of time, is that I pray for him every single night. On his bad days, I stop and pray for him during the days too.
Communicating with God
I grew up with the idea of “laying of hands” on the one you pray for. This might be why I’m a touchy-feely person. I never really bought into that idea. My mind always told me God was bigger than touch. But lately, I’ve been doing it.
When Nick sleeps over, I reach out and comb my hands through his hair, I rub his biceps, and, while he is already snoring and sleeping, I pray something like this:
Dear Lord, thank you for this man. Thank you for this good man who loves me. Thank you for his mind, his heart and his soul. But he’s in trouble, so please calm his mind and bring him peace. Help his ups and his downs find stability. Help his heart feel your love and the love you give me to give to him. Help his soul feel freedom and excitement. And Lord, please help me be the woman he needs in his life – as his partner, as his friend, and as whatever he needs. Amen.
This is how I communicate with God. This is where I get my strength. This is how I feel a sense of peace when I feel lost. I pray for Nick because I love him. I pray for him because I have faith that God is working in our lives.
Things may not always be happy, things may not be like a fairy-tale story, but I’ll keep praying, knowing that this is just the part of the storm where others would turn back and never get the reward across the ocean.
(Photo by Carolyn V on Unsplash)