My Nickel and Dime Prayers
Harriet White of Lamoni, IA, USA
It is imperative to understand that when you are truly baptized into Christ you become part of a new creation. By taking on the life and mind of Christ, you increasingly view yourselves and others from a changed perspective. Former ways of defining people by economic status, social class, sex, gender, or ethnicity no longer are primary. Through the gospel of Christ a new community of tolerance, reconciliation, unity in diversity, and love is being born as a visible sign of the coming reign of God. -Doctrine and Covenants164:5
When I was a child, I would spend time with my dad. I would often ask, without forethought as to whether my requests were in my best interest, for the nickels and dimes in his pocket to buy a soda, a candy bar, or some trinket. He would, with false exasperation, pull change out of his pocket saying, “Child, you’re going to nickel and dime me to death!”
I often wondered when I prayed if God was ever tempted to say to me in fatherly fashion, “Child, you’re going to wear me out with your wants and demands! (You’re going to nickel and dime me to death!)”
As my children grew, it was during times of dialoguing their concerns we learned the unique gift of spiritual friendship and prayer that moves us beyond the present moment of “I want” and toward a more holistic future. One son, very analytical in his thinking, would share a concern. I would listen, asking specific questions as we dialogued. When we were finished he would say to me, “Okay, what direction do we need to take in our prayers?” His question told me he understood two very important concepts. First, what we ask for and will make us feel better for the immediate moment may not always be in our best interest. Secondly, he was able to look to long-term goals and align his present moment with how he envisioned his future.
Spiritual friendship is the gift of having someone who can help us view our present moment in relationship to our future, someone with whom we can dialogue our life journey. A spiritual friend will listen, ask relevant questions, and help us prayerfully discern the movement of the Holy Spirit in all areas of our life.
“Your mercies are new every morning” (Lamentations 3:22-23, adapted).
Ordinary Time is a season for noticing the details of life that make up its substance. This month, we invite you to pay attention with each fresh morning to the gift of being alive. Before getting out of bed, take a few deep breaths and notice what it feels like to wake up in your own body. Engage the tasks of your unfolding day with reverence-brushing your teeth, making the bed, pouring the coffee, tending the kids, feeding the animals, making breakfast, etc. Notice the presence of the Holy in every ordinary thing. Embrace your daily routines with sacramental significance. Notice how long you can do this before your attention is taken away, and commit to returning to this simple awareness as gently and often as you can.
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.