pray harder

When you are a child and you want something, you pray.

You ask for a puppy, a new baby brother or sister, or a pair of red cowgirl boots and you promise to be good. 

Then you try to be good.  And well —

When you are a child and you lose something, you pray. 

It seems like the end of the world, but — a quick prayer to St. Anthony with all the saints and angels followed by a peanut butter sandwich and a nap and — eureka! 

Found — or forgotten.

When you are a child and you are afraid of something, you pray. 

You put your hands together and you close your eyes and you ask God to make it go away.

Then you inch a little closer to your sister in the bed and you nudge her just a little bit and ask her “did you hear that?”

And she elbows you or maybe if she’s heard something too, she offers to reach over and turn on the clock radio.  You listen to “One is the Loneliest Number” and start to doze off or you ask for another 10 minutes of music.  But sooner or later you open the curtains and the sun is out and within minutes of waking you’re fighting over who gets to ride in the front seat.

When you are an adult and you want something —

When you are an adult and you lose something —

When you are an adult and you are afraid of something —

You pray harder.

Today I pray harder for my old friend and former colleague who is fighting for his life. 

As children we painted the walls in my family’s basement with our favorite cartoon characters.  His brother chose Goofy.  And he and I put our brushes to work on making Mickey Mouse appear. 

We didn’t care about making mistakes. 

The canvas seemed endless. 

Let it be. 

Author: Julie Ann Stevens

My art flows from the patterns & paths of my lived experience which ⏤ like yours ⏤ are at once deeply personal and entirely universal.

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