Do we need to pray for our loved ones everyday?
And why do I need to pray continually in the first place, even when it seems like no one is listening?
My answer of logic
Because you never know, someone might be listening. What if the invisible God is really there and listening? Would it be a lost to stop praying to Him? On the other hand, if you continue praying, you lose nothing.
My answer of faith
I do not just believe that He is listening. I know for a fact that He is, even if I cannot feel it.
I never cease praying for my loved ones. Even when I don't feel like it. Not because I think God is not listening. It's because sometimes our loved ones do not always appreciate it. Perhaps they were upset or disappointed or discouraged, and sometimes in times like these, people might be angry towards God or give up on Him and decided to cease praying because it seems like there's no point in doing so. And sometimes, they became so angry they snapped at you and told you to "Stop mumbling those nonsense, useless prayer! Why don't you try to do something real instead, for a change! That would be more productive!"
First. Those words, coming from a loved one, hurt pretty bad.
Second. Many times when our loved one is being put to the test, there are very limited things we could do to help. There are very limited things anyone could do to help. In my case, I tried to do anything to make my loved one feel more comfortable or happier. Buy him favorite food and snacks. Keep a smiling, cheerful face though I was worried and tired and sad and angry myself. Keep the house tidy. Always being available to listen to complaints and nags as annoying as it is to hear negative sentences being blasted to your ears over and over again. So, being accused of not doing anything real but just mumbling meaningful, useless prayers is definitely unfair.
But who says that life is fair? It is not. So instead of just complaining and yelling to no avail, just shut up, accept the reality, live with it, even enjoy it! Despite all the unfairness, life is still great and beautiful anyway, IF you choose to see it like that. Being grumpy doesn't help but making people become annoyed and might leave you altogether.
You catch more bees with honey, than with vinegar.
When you are miserable, lashing out at your loved ones will NOT make you feel better, or make the situation any better. It will make you feel worse, and could jeopardize the relationship you have with your loved ones. Is it worth it? I don't think so.
Hurtful words are like hammering a nail to a wall. You can take the nail out, but the “scar” will always be there. You can forgive, but it’s almost impossible to forget, unless we have amnesia, of course!
So what do you do when your loved one yell at you to stop praying for him/her?
Keep praying. No storm lasts forever. And when it passed, you and your loved one will be very thankful that you didn't stop praying.
Listen to Him who created Heaven and Earth and everything in it. For me, it's reading the Bible. For years I didn't know how to read the Bible. Several years ago, I learned to practice lectio divina, which is a technique used in a monastery I visited that taught me how to grasp the word of God from the Bible. I prayed before reading the Bible, asking for guidance, ask His grace to explain His word and make them clear to me. I'm still struggling, but it made a lot of difference.
Don't take the hurtful words personally. Most of the time, your loved ones say hurtful things because they were angry at themselves, and at the situation that they cannot control. Not at you. They just lashed out at you because you're the nearest person around and because you love them, they know you will not leave them. Unfair? Definitely. Most of the time, we tend to take our loved ones for granted. But I believe that loving someone is a choice. I could either stay and keep loving, or just leave them altogether.
Keep doing whatever routine and good things you do everyday. Clean the house. Go to work. Fix your hair. Take a shower. Fill the pantry. Negative emotions are like poison to positive ones. Do not succumb to it. Keep your sunshine shining within you to light the darkness around.
Looking for support. To me it's reading encouraging posts from the blogs on the internet. Some people will go to their pastors, or parents, or friends, for advice. I rather keep my personal problems personal, but everybody is different.
Learn from other people's mistake. If you loved one is being childish and immature and selfish, doesn’t mean you should retaliate and do the same thing to him! You should set a higher standard for yourself, and for your loved ones! That’s why we have loved ones around. To influence in a positive way.
Remember: no storm lasts forever. It never did, it never will. Hang in there. And keep praying. One day, when all of this passed, your loved one will thank you for it.
"Then he told them a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary." (Luke 18)
These pictures were taken during my 23rd week of pregnancy. The checked trapeze was from my mother in law, which she wore when she was pregnant many years ago. Yup, I don't mind wearing hands me down, and this one is very very useful! I wore it many many times during my pregnancy!
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