We Can Pray – Even When We Have No Words

I grew up believing that the only way to pray is through actual words spoken to God, but as I have gotten older, I have come to understand that prayer, at least for me, does not always pass through verbalization. I believe that prayer is sometimes a mere connecting. I must believe this because in my own journey, there have been many times that I was too weak to find words for God. If I truly believed that the only way to communicate with God was through my voice, I would think that God is a limited source and that his love is conditional and only to be sought by those whose faith is strong enough to say the right things. But I believe that God is more. He is unlimited, and he hears us wherever and however we are.

“We must lay before Him what is in us, not what ought to be in us.” – C.S. Lewis

To believe that God’s listening to us is dependent upon the words that we say is believing that the power of prayer is a human thing and that we, as humans, hold the key to grace and that we attain that grace through our own strengths. In reality, I believe that we, as humans, have very little strength that is our own. God is the power in prayer. He is all-knowing, all-seeing and all-hearing. He has an inhuman ability to listen–even when we have no words.

“It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

Forest Daffodil: The Prayer – Jacki Kellum Watercolor

I hear God’s voice when I am quiet and alone in nature.

Be Still and Know That I Am God. – Psalm 46: 10

“Why must people kneel down to pray? If I really wanted to pray I’ll tell you what I’d do. I’d go out into a great big field all alone or in the deep, deep woods and I’d look up into the sky—up—up—up—into that lovely blue sky that looks as if there was no end to its blueness. And then I’d just feel a prayer.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

If I am strong enough to hear God’s voice through Nature, how much more does He hear from me–wherever I am?

“We should seek not so much to pray but to become prayer.” ― Francis of Assisi

As a child, I learned the scripture “Pray without ceasing.” Honestly, if the only prayers were verbal ones, it would be impossible to pray without ceasing. We cannot speak incessantly.

“Pray without ceasing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17

“In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart. ”
― John Bunyan

God is all-powerful. He is everywhere we dare to venture. He is the rope to pull us back. He hears us when we cannot speak. He hears us and knows us, as we are.

“The Great Spirit is everywhere; He hears whatever is in our minds and our hearts, and it is not necessary to speak to Him in a loud voice.” – Native American

In summary, I’d like to repeat something that I said before. We, as humans, are not the power in prayer. God is. Ultimately, I believe that prayer is more about what we hear than what we say. Prayer is the willingness to listen and to hear,


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