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Windowsill prayers
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 "But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your father, who is unseen. Then your father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you," (Matt 6:6 NIV).

 I have discovered an unexpected place for my own prayer room. After dinner is over and the dishes are cleared, my family escapes for a while. It is then that I find myself gazing out of the kitchen window to see God's beauty. Towering pine trees sway gently. Hawks seem to float in the distance. Squirrels leap from limb to limb. Our whispering waterfall quietly reminds me to stop and take in the view.

 So, I scrub and pray silently.

 Gradually, my heartbeat slows down. Rushed before dinner and during the preparation, I let my hands warm in the sudsy water. I'm aware that many other folks around the world are doing the same thing as I am during chores.

 What is on their heart tonight, Lord? Do they worry about their family, their friends and finances? Things seem so hard for everyone. Do you see tears trickling down their faces as they beg for just one more day or one more chance to make a right out of a wrong? Are other people overwhelmed with balancing their time? What about their enemies, Lord? How can we pray for them?

 With all of this worry, am I taking time to praise you? Please prod me to focus on the things for which I'm thankful. You have been so good to me. Thank you for remaining faithful.

 Thank you for reminding me that you are always with me. Continue to nudge me to take the time to be alone with you. Thank you for hearing my heart.

 Lisa Hetzel can be reached at