All of you may relate to the experience where you can be listening to a Sunday school lesson, a sacrament meeting talk, General Conference, or, even sitting around the dinner table and you hear a comment that just seems to resonate with you. You do not forget it.
On one occasion, I was listening to a General Conference talk by Elder Bednar. He said, “At the very moment we say, ‘Father in Heaven,’ He hears our prayers and is sensitive to us and our needs. And so His eyes and His ears are now connected to you. He reads our minds, and He feels our hearts.”
To me, that is such an incomprehensible statement for my finite, mortal brain to completely understand. The creator of innumerable worlds and hosts of children greater than the sands of the sea – aware of me and paying strict attention to me? Given such a glorious love and interest in me personally, I need to think each and every moment of the day how important it is to seek the Lord out in sincere prayer. How foolish not to!
“And likewise also is it counted evil unto a man, if he shall pray and not with real intent of heart; yea, and it profiteth him nothing, for God receiveth none such. “ (Moroni 7:9)
I am reminded of a poem of sorts by Carol Lynn Pearson,
“This radio set called prayer is designed for remarkably simple repair. When the lines fail there is no doubt which half of the set is out.”
Too many times we fall into the rut of simply saying our prayers without much thought. Sometimes, when others are praying, we are thinking about work, sports, social activities, homework, etc. We should pray intently and listen intently when others are praying. Even though we may say the same things frequently in our prayers, the main point is that we are sincere and speaking from our heart.
We need to cherish the great blessing of prayer. It needs to be a very sacred moment for each of us.
And then, as we pray and after we pray, we need to listen for the Still Small Voice to enlighten us. We need to write things down that come as impressions to us. We need to continue the dialogue with the Lord to know if there is more for us to learn. All along, pouring out our gratitude for the goodness of our Heavenly Father.
Books can be written about the importance of prayer. But, upper most, let’s pray with real intent and with a sure knowledge that the Lord is there and He is listening.