nonsermon #5: my prayers

For my understanding of prayer to expand, it first had to collapse. nonsermon #5 is about learning the many forms that prayer takes:


by Ben Lewellyn-Taylor

I’ve been thinking a lot about prayer: what it does, how different people practice it, if it works. Mostly, I’d like to know why it worked for me for so many years, then it didn’t. I cannot place the moment it happened, but over time, when I bowed my head to pray, the words rolled around my mouth like rocks, felt ill-fitting and awkward.

Eventually, I stopped trying.

Prayer was a ritual I would practice every morning, every evening, and in the day when I felt compelled. I prayed before meals, with friends, alone. How did it become almost nonexistent? When did it become reserved for times when my family asks me to bless our holiday meals, deferring to me as a qualified person to connect with the spirit of God?

And how to say that out loud to them? Or anyone?

My mother often asks…

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