Holding hands for prayer

February 7, 2010

It is tradition in my family to hold hands around the table for the blessing. It comes from my dad’s family, and though we like to say all kinds of things he did growing up came from old Swedish traditions, I can’t substantiate holding hands to be particularly Scandinavian. But I like it and now it’s the rule in my house too.

I am not accustomed to praying for a group. Most of the time, I pray when I’m in the car, usually out loud. I talk to God about regular life–happiness and hurt (and all that comes in between). I ask him to open my eyes to pictures of his grace. I rush him with my brokenness and fall on his mercy. I confess the things I value more than him, and he invites me to a peace where he assures me that he holds my hands.

This assurance is my prayer for my guests too, but I haven’t figured out how to ask God for all this in front of other people. So far, my prayers are rushed and formulaic. We’re working on it; meanwhile, we’ll be holding hands.

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