Prayer Experience — Ana Gobledale, UK

The Phenomenon of Prayer

I’d love to say that I pray without ceasing,
but I do,
cease that is.

I would love to say that I pray with understanding,
but I often pray from a place of not-knowing.

I would love to say that I pray with a deep sense of connection to the Spirit,
but sometimes it feels that
only a thin thread of hope connects me to anything.

What I can say is that
the openness to connecting with a higher power,
shifts my reality and my experience of it.

When I stubbornly refuse to pray,
refuse to ask for assistance or guidance,
the world can seem to be pressing in on me,
feeling overwhelming and unmanageable.

When I am convinced of a need to go solo,
to handle a situation on my own,
the experiences of panic and confusion
often slide into my head,
and if I persistently continue to withhold prayer,
I begin to entertain thoughts
of using alternative coping mechanisms,
usually unhealthy.

When I open myself to spiritual guidance,
whatever that actually is,
the pressure decreases,
and often recedes completely.

The feelings of being overwhelmed and out of control
like so much mist,
as a path to follow
becomes illuminated before me.

The panic and confusion
replaced by trust and confidence,
confidence that I am not alone,
that I need not fly solo,
that I am held in love.

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