A wise man taught me that God is not impressed with the length or eloquence of our prayers. He maintained that short, one-sentence prayers spread throughout our day were more valuable in relating to God. He pointed out that the closest relationships in life are not marked by paragraphs of communication, but rather pertinent, brief dialogues.
I’ve embraced this concept and find that my days are often filled with running, audible dialogue with God (often when I’m by myself). With the advent of Bluetooth technology, most observers probably think I’m talking to another human being when they see me talking while driving solo. I’ve discovered that there are so very many things to talk to God about.
In one outing alone, when I was running errands, I shared with God that I was looking for a parking space in a very crowded lot. He heard me. Had you been a fly in my car, you would have heard me respond with “Thank you, Lord.” Later when I began backing out of that tight parking space, I realized after I had checked my blind spot, that a woman with a walker had moved behind my car and I just missed hitting her. Another hearty “Thank you” proceeded from my mouth. “Hitting her right now would have been very inconvenient for me, Lord.” Immediately a correction arrived, Not to mention for her!
Sometimes my running dialogue includes psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sometimes it begins as a pity party and ends with me being bolstered with a Biblical solution. Sometimes I’m told to seek out a friendly, listening ear. Sometimes I’m told to repent.
One of the marks of my sanctification is that there are tangible evidences that I am not the same person I was prior to my conversion. How do I know? Because when I hurry through the house and slam my arm into the door, or spill hot water on myself while draining pasta, or discover that I’ve let a bill sit in my basket passed the due date, I call out to the Lord instead of uttering (or muttering) a curse. You see, that used to be my standard practice. The Holy Spirit, indeed, gives me utterances that are in praise of God rather than taking His name in vain or speaking a vulgarity.
It is true that you are known by the company you keep. I would have to say that among the greatest blessings procured by the Cross is that the Holy Spirit is my constant companion interceding for me in my running dialogue.
I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad. O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together. (Psalm 34:1-3)