Questions are a good beginning. They often challenge us to think and live in new ways. Sometimes another person poses the query. At other times, we ask the question, and, at still other times, the question seems to have a divine origin. It rises in our minds like a flower born in the forest where no flowers have bloomed before. The questions to follow are delicate, tender flowers blooming in the shadows of a forest of beliefs held by humanity for thousands of years.
What if the focus of prayer is not the world and our earthly needs and concerns? Could the purpose of our prayers be to prepare us to hear the prayer God prays?
What if prayer is not words, but the way we learn the language of Spirit—silence? What if all prayers have the same answer?
Could it be true that God knows our needs before we ask? If this is true, why ask for anything? What if God is not far away, but close at hand—closer than hands and feet and breathing? All of these questions give rise to one grand query. Would the answers implied by these questions change the way we pray?
If prayer is not words, how would we pray? if prayer is not about human problems, what is it about? How do we pray if there is only one answer to any prayer we pray? If God knows our needs before we ask, should we ask anyway? Who is the asking for? If God is closer than our next breathe, perhaps our purpose in prayer should be to become aware of the God that is close at hand.
Questions are supposed to lead to answers, but these questions invite confusion and more questions; and yet, they are intriguing. They seem to offer new possibilities, and with all the confusion and fear in the world today, something new might lead us to act in ways that invite healing and the discovery of a common ground that is more than planet Earth. Or perhaps it is easier to dismiss the questions and return to the tried and true. Fear often causes us to seek security in what we know rather than to venture into the unknown to find a new way. Initially, this was my response, but there was one thing that made a difference. The questions seemed to have a divine origin; they were flowers blooming where no flowers had bloomed before. As I became willing to learn answers to the questions, I discovered that it was the Creator who has a prayer to pray.