This is the Day…Friday
November 27, 2020
Let Us Pray
One of the benefits of working near downtown Graham is that there are several nice restaurants within walking distance. Occasionally, I will walk from the church down to Suttons or The Soda Shop or maybe a new restaurant to enjoy a quiet lunch and the warm sunshine. Several weeks before Thanksgiving, I took advantage of the beautiful weather and took a stroll down to one of these local establishments.
When I arrived, the waitress was very kind and attentive, bringing me my unsweetened tea and meal very quickly. I thanked her and then, as I typically do, I bowed my head briefly just to say a quick thanks for the meal that had been provided. It was not a long prayer and certainly was not intended to appear self-righteous or to be noticed by anyone. Just an opportunity to show my appreciation to God for all He provides.
After my quiet blessing, I began enjoying my lunch. Several minutes later, my waitress came to my table to refill my beverage. As she did so, she asked, “Were you praying after I brought your food?” I said, “Yes, why do you ask?” “No reason,” she said. “I just don’t see people pray very much anymore.” Wow! That statement says it all! It is unfortunate when we fail to take a moment to simply give thanks for those things which we could easily take for granted. It is even more unfortunate if we fail to give thanks for fear of how it may look to those around us.
Our Lord gave us a mandate to pray. The Scriptures even tell us that we should never stop praying! “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-17) Most of us pray before our meals at home. It is likely you prayed before you shared your Thanksgiving feast yesterday. We pray before closing our eyes to sleep. We pray when we hear of someone sick or in need. But are we hesitant, or even fearful, of praying in a venue where the world might notice? Maybe that is the problem!
Has the world’s rejection of our faith caused us to be self-conscious about how we are viewed in the world? The Scriptures tells us that we are to be in the world but not of the world. People of faith are to be a difference noticed in the world. The world needs to see people of faith praying! Not in a pious or self-righteous way. Not standing on a street corner or putting on a show. But praying because that is who we are. Praying because we are a people in relationship with the one true and living God. What greater testimony to the validity of our faith can there be?
Before I left the restaurant at lunch that day, I thanked my waitress for her honest comment and told her I would be praying for her. I was amazed when she shared a kind smile and said, “Thank you, I think I will pray for you too.”