“When you cannot sleep at night, have you ever thought maybe it’s God saying, ‘We need to talk, and now you have the time?’” (Pinterest) When teaching children how to pray, I would sometimes put an empty chair in front of them and have them imagine that Jesus is sitting in that chair. “Now, talk to him as you would to a friend.” (You might even try that yourself!) A Gospel song goes… “You’ll find a little talk with Jesus makes it right!” ;-) Jack
FROM DR JUDY: I LOVE this Jack!!! What a great idea. I was talking to a client last night about times when he suddenly turns sad or melancholy for no apparent reason. We talked about the possibility that maybe it's his inner self wanting to get his attention for reflection.====JACK: There are some similarities in our work. Dealing with the inner self is one of them.
FROM CEEESS: I guess he wants to talk every night!====JACK: You never get a busy signal from God.
FROM FACEBOOK LIZ: Like====JACK: Jesus is God personalizing himself.
FROM SUE AT HCC: A great reminder, thanks.====JACK: Some people use a string tied on a finger; others, like you, use Winning Words.
FROM TARMART REV: ...some of those "little talks" have lasted all night long!!====JACK: That's almost like praying without ceasing.
FROM STEVE KENT: Tricks of the trade. We have a leadership retreat this weekend at church. Perfect timing.====JACK: A teacher's job is to teach. Tricks of the trade, or whatever works. I will be interested to hear if you use "the chair."
FROM RI IN BOSTON: Yes, I've considered it a time for prayer, and I've used it. It's amazing that at such a time when I should be sleepy, I find my thoughts are remarkably clear.====JACK: I keep two Prayer Lists...one is on paper...the other is in my mind...one for the morning and one for the night.
FROM JR IN CALIFORNIA: Good morning, dear one. What a wonderful idea. I'll add that to my before sleep "talk".====JACK: I find that I do more talking than listening in my prayer-life. It's amazing how God-thoughts can come to mind if we just stop and let it happen. BTW, is there a chapel at the hospital where you volunteer? A nurse friend of mine goes into her hospital's chapel for prayer each day before her shift.
FROM RJP IN NAPLES: Whenever Chris can't sleep she prays herself to sleep. I just ask for forgiveness and say call Pastor Freed.====JACK: I don't remember ever seeing you fall asleep during one of my sermons. In fact, visually, you were one of the most attentive listeners in the congregation, responding appropriately to each thought. You see lots of things as you look out over the people.
FROM GUSTIE MARLYS: Speaking of prayers—one time when Craig was 3—we were at Freemont Congregational Church and Clifford was preaching. He was praying at the end of the sermon and had his hands on either side of the pulpit like he often did. Craig hollered out “Grandpa, fold your hands”. The congregation loved it! Ha! We were embarrassed!====JACK: I laughed out loud, because I was a vicar for Clifford and I remember that prayer stance. And I laughed, because I like it when children will speak what they think, in spite of their parents. My grandson, when he was about Craig's age, was out with his parents. Some strangers, near to them, were smiling at the family. My grandson blurted out, "What are you looking at?" My daughter was mortified. Later, she learned that he had picked up that phrase from a Bible video that he had watched.
FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY: What a great way to teach children to talk/pray to God! Often I talk to him and often I fall to sleep while still listing the people I want to pray for. I'm comforted by the fact He already knows who I pray for so I don't worry if I miss someone.====JACK: Corrie ten Boom once said about prayer...."Don't bother to give God instructions; just report for duty."
FROM BLAZING OAKS: "Have a little talk with Jesus, Makes it right!" was my son Fred's favorite song that our men's quintette did, and now when he returns for a visit on a Sunday *(rare) the four who are left still sing it for him. Love that song, myself! On the rare occasions when I awake in the night, I do pray for those in need and for my loved ones....I also pray at stop lights, and waiting on freight trains, etc And on Sunday mornings on the way to church for our pastor, choir director and organist, etc. Talking to Jesus like he's in the chair would be a good visual technique for anyone! Good idea!====JACK: Why not have your Bible Study group experiment with "the empty chair" and see if it changes the way a prayer is offered? Or, at your next family gathering, why not have the one who offers the prayer face an empty chair?