Before we talk about prayer, we have to talk about G-D. I am not comfortable writing that out, that is how I was raised in Hebrew School, not to write the Lord’s name, then the paper becomes holy, we would al have to much saved paper!
Do I believe in G-D? I don’t know. I do know that I believe in a higher power, I do think there is a power greater than myself out there, and I have made the conscious decision to call that G-D. I have named that higher power G-D more as a focal point than anything else. Or a nickname if you will.
I was raised in the Jewish faith and always believed in a G-D, I just felt that he had no interest in me. And maybe that’s true. But as an adult, I have been taught to take responsibility for myself and my actions. Perhaps I was not doing my half of the work as a youth, after all it takes 2 to tango, and if I want to dance with a higher power, maybe I have to be the one to lead, or at the minimum, take action.
Huh? That means, I have to take the first step. That first step for me is opening up a dialogue. With whom? With what? With the great spirit of the universe? I don’t know, hence the giving of the nickname. The point here is I have to take the first step and start talking to G-D.
So, what do you say? “Hey, how you doin?” Why not? There are no rules; I no longer believe that only an organized religion can tell me how to talk to my higher power. That is my personal decision, it is just important that I do the work, start talking, and open up the communication.
How does this all work? How should I know? But I will take a stab at it. I can pray and say “G-D, please keep me from getting sick.” But you know, that feels one sided. I prefer, “G-D, please help me to not get sick, just for today.” If you read that the way I meant it to be read, it means I have to participate in this transaction. Basically, I am asking this higher power to help me, help myself. Again, that means, if the thought pops into my head to do something preventative, like take a cough drop right when I feel a scratchy throat, or wear a scarf, to take any step I wasn’t going to take, until saying that “prayer” reminded me, than perhaps saying the prayer was its own self-fulfilling prophecy. And so what, as long it works.
Growing up I might have asked G-D to not make me gay. That doesn’t work. Praying for help with acceptance of who you are by nature of how you were born, that might work. I try not to be specific, and again, I try to acknowledge that I have a responsibility in the prayer transaction.
BUT, you want to know the BEST PRAYER ever? “G-D, thy will be done, not mine.” OK, stolen from the 12 steps, but here’s the theory behind this one. The universe, the karma of living a useful life, the higher power, and/or G-D, want what’s best for me. That is my choice of belief, or rather, that is what I strive for. And one time I had actual proof of all of this working!
We started laying the ground work for our adoption process several years before our son was born. As we moved along the path, I used that prayer, G-D, thy will be done, not mine. And it was easy, because I was absolutely horrified at the complete lack of control I had over the result of this journey. So I let go more than I ever have before. And I just took the next step in front of me, the next right action, and prepared for an adoption that really was an impossibility. We had no money, we had no plan, and we had no way to care for a child. And we knew even less.
So we finally went to the support group I knew about, we got a social worker through that group, we hired a lawyer the social worker recommended, and we hired an adoption adviser that the lawyer recommended. We took the next step in front of us and just moved along the path, asking the universe for guidance along the way. And by asking the universe for guidance along the way, I mean I prayed to G-D. See, there are multiple ways to view that action, none right or wrong; my core belief is only that you have to ask.
You already know the end of the story. G-D’s will was done completely, 100%, and perfectly. I still marvel at the amazing child I was given to raise, I will never forget the angels that guided us every step of the way, and I am even more grateful that I prayed instead of trying to control any possible outcomes. The universe picked the child; we just had to take the next right step in front of us.
So 2 old, poor, gay guys adopted an infant at birth. Happens all the time these days. And it is my belief that I was taken care of by the universe, and I believe I was taken care of because I ASKED!
Is this perfect, am I perfect, is my life a bed of roses? Not at all. The hardships have not decreased, the work is still arduous, but my dream came true. And I feel that I had support from the “universe,” or “higher power,” or G-D.
This post is not about the adoption, this post is just an example of what I look at when wondering if there is a spirit guiding us. I believe this praying, or asking, or participating, works. Just my own humble opinion from my own experiences, as I choose to see them. And on the simplest level, I think talking to “G-D” can also be a way to reinforce our own desires, perhaps give us a little push forward. But the concept that G-D is within us, is for a whole other conversation!