Q: Different prayer paths
Here's an interesting question:
There was an article written by a woman who has a son with Downs' syndrome. She makes the statement that her son "had a useful place in life, no matter what the material picture." That started me thinking.
The article doesn't reveal how she might have prayed, but I wondered, how should she have been praying for her son? to find his "useful place in life" or for his Downs' syndrome to be healed? Shouldn't we always be praying to see through the material picture (i.e. heal the Downs' syndrome), not to find our useful place in the midst of it?
The words that leap out at me in the question are "should" and "shouldn't." I think we always need to pray the prayer, "There but for the grace of God, go I," and realize that we can't determine for another where their path is leading them. We need to trust that each person's prayer and inspiration is valid for them, where they are on their journey, at that point in time.
If we were in the same circumstances, it's possible we would be led differently, but that's still valid. If we're all following divine Love's leading, we can't go astray.
I still remember the first time this lesson hit me over the head. I was in Los Angeles for the first time, and interviewing with people at some studios as research for a book. One gentleman was a long-time entertainment professional who happened to be a Christian Scientist. I was in my mid-twenties; he was about fifteen years older.
Well, we got to talking about Science, and it turned out he had very very different ideas on how you could live the life than I did. But I could see that while my conclusions were based on what I'd always been told was right by older people who I assumed were wiser, his conclusions were straight from experience. His life and practice exemplified what he believed. My practice was still mostly theoretical.
So, I shut up and didn't argue. I accepted as valid for him the conclusions he had reached. They wouldn't have worked for me, but they did for him.
My point is that I believe the best way we can support and learn from another's demonstration is to be prepared to accept the path they're on and the validity of their conclusions. Perhaps we can consider how *we* might have handled something differently, but we can never say how *they* should have handled it. Sometimes we will experience complete freedom from the circumstance; other times we will learn deeper spiritual lessons through undergoing human adversity.
Per the above question: However this loving mother must have prayed, it's clear she's feeling the presence of Love in her relationship with her son. If that's bringing her a sense of healing and harmony, the prayer worked.
That isn't to say that if I were faced with a similar circumstance that I'd pray or expect exactly the same thing. I might experience another form of Love's presence. *Any* expression of Love's presence is valid—and powerful.
To me, it's not about praying for a specific outcome. It's more about cultivating the heart of prayer to feel more of God's presence. Pray for increased harmony. When that increase comes, recognize Love's presence and give thanks. Then, you're fitted to "receive more."
Your ideas and inspiration are welcome! Please comment below or Contact Laura.
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