Monkey see, monkey do. This is true of the monkeys mimicking the gawkers at the zoo, and it is true (many times) of the parent/child relationship. Children will often imitate and repeat what they observe their parents doing and saying. As a matter of fact, I have found that my son serves as a behavioral mirror of sorts in my life.
For instance, I begin virtually every prayer I pray with “Dear God, thanks . . .” I never realized how much I do that until I hear my son now beginning every bedtime prayer with “Dear God, thanks for . . .” He is probably picking up other phrases from me, but for the sake of this post, we’ll keep it in the positives 🙂 .
Another thing that my son does in reflection of dear old dad is his fascination with cell phones. I spend way too many hours with a phone to my ear or scrolling through email on that handheld device. Because of that, Josh wants in on the action as well. Virtually any small rectangular object can serve as his “phone.” He even has two toy plastic cell phones. A friend even gave him her old Samsung (deactivated) that he carries around from time to time, occasionally putting it up to his ear and having conversations with imaginary people on the other end.
This behavior from a two year old is cute and endearing. Josh continues to try to talk on his “phones” even though no one is ever really on the other end. What a great contrast that is to the phone in my pocket. I use my phone often also, but there is always someone there on the other end. Either I call someone or they call me to fellowship, exchange information, or make requests. If there were no one on the other end of my phone line, I would soon grow tired of the plastic box in my pocket and stop checking it.
I go through this today because at Wildwood over the next two Sundays we are going to be starting a new series entitled, “Can You Hear Me Now.” This series deals with the topic of prayer by looking at two of Jesus’ parables on the topic of prayer from Luke 11 and 18. Jesus told these parables to His followers (and they have been passed along to us through the preservation of the Scriptures) to encourage His followers to pray. I think one of the primary reasons we do not pray more is because we begin to think that prayer is more like Josh’s toy phones then the real deal in my pocket. We begin to think that no One is really listening on the other end, or that prayer never really accomplishes anything at all, so we grow tired of the concept and fail to fellowship with the Father frequently.
By looking at these parables over the next two weeks, it is my prayer that we will come to understand that there is GREAT network coverage for our prayer, so God can ALWAYS hear us in the here and now. We have unlimited minutes and the calls are never dropped, so we can pray with confidence, knowing that God hears us. This week, though, we will take that one step further. Not only can God hear us, but He WANTS to hear us and respond to our prayers by giving us good gifts. I am looking forward to our time together Sunday. Between now and Sunday, try to read Luke 11:5-13 in preparation for our time together. See you at the 9:30 or 10:50 service at Wildwood!