Do We Think to Pray?


My daughter Tillie Rose loves to pray. I hope that I never forget the way she clasps her pudgy hands together, or how she mimics the way we start our prayers, “Heavenly Father”, in a very high pitched voice sounding something like, “hebeny fada”. I am amazed that a little girl that isn’t even potty trained can somehow remember to pray before every meal. And I love looking up at Dave after Tillie’s prayers, and seeing a grin as big as mine as we hear her energetic “Aaaameeen!”

Now just in case you feel like I’m tooting my own horn here, I should make it clear that we aren’t always praying. We try to remember before meals and before bed, but definitely aren’t perfect. But luckily Tillie has caught on, and for some reason loves it. In fact, every once in a while we will catch her pretending (or for all I know really praying) by herself, and sometimes she will just randomly turn to us and say “Prayer, mommy daddy?”

This happened yesterday in the car. Tillie and I were driving to a city about 20 minutes away, when I heard her little voice pipe up from the back, “Pray? Mommy?” and sure enough I looked back to see her earnest eyes, and her pudgy hand clasped together. I asked her, “Do you want to say a prayer?” and then saw her face break out into a smile as she said “la!” (her form of yea!). So I proceeded to pretend to close my eyes and then prayed as we drove, listing off the things we typically pray for. No sooner had I ended the prayer, however, than I heard another “more, pray, mom?” from the back. So I asked again, “Do you want to say another prayer?” to which she again smiled and answered “la!”

This continued, and by the 4th prayer I was digging deeper, thinking of something I hadn't yet prayed for, and my prayers became heartfelt as I expressed gratitude for things I don’t usually mention. I expressed gratitude that we didn’t have any traffic (funny how I am quick to pray for traffic to clear up, but I don’t know the last I prayed just because I was grateful for clear roads), for my good health and a good night’s sleep the night before, that I was able to get out of my house with Tillie, and thanked God for many things I often take for granted.

Needless to say in those 20 minutes there was such a sweet feeling in our car and in my heart. Tillie was peaceful. I was more focused on her. We could feel the spirit.

How humbled I was to be taught by a little child to think to pray. I need to remember that I can pray at anytime, anywhere, and that there is so much to be thankful for.

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lizzy jensen