"Take care… not to forget the things which your own eyes have seen, nor let them slip from your memory as long as you live, but teach them to your children and to your children's children." – Deut. 4:9

God, I keep looking for you and I can’t seem to find you.

     When I sit down to pray, nothing happens.

     When it’s my turn to share in a group, all words escape me. I sense you are there, but have no words to describe you.

     In imaginative prayer, I don’t see what I am “supposed to” see.

I keep looking God, why can’t I find you?

My bookshelf and web browser are filled with books and resources that tell me where to look for You. I keep following the 5 steps, 10 habits, or 7 essentials that promise me the “best Lent ever” or “deepest prayer of my life.” And yet no matter how much I do, I can’t make You happen. 

Last week I spoke to a group of 30 middle school students on the topic of prayer, healing, and Reconciliation. I said a bunch of things that I thought were powerful, engaging, and challenging. And the tween-agers responded with a resounding blank stare.

God, sometimes You and I are like awkward middle schoolers fumbling through a conversation. I’m trying to “express myself” and “be my own person” and yet fit in with everyone else all at the same time. I keep looking for You to connect with me in other people’s language, rather than in the unique ways that you and I relate to each other.

Yet, You are as unimpressed by my theatrics as that 12-year-old boy in the third row. I’m trying to hard and then getting discouraged.

At the heart of it though, all You ask is that I be myself with You.

Jen Coito

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