One of the things that always strikes me about my children is how they pray. Sometimes their requests are downright silly, like how Martyn begins every prayer by thanking the Lord for Tim Tebow and eggs (the combination alone makes me laugh). But a trademark of their prayers always seems to be bravery.
They seem not to have received the memo that we as adults have posted on a sticky note above our desks—the note that tells us some requests either aren’t important or aren’t possible. They are brave enough to ask for whatever comes into their minds and hearts, unashamed of how silly they might look in the process. They are undaunted by the truth that our prayers reveal what’s in our hearts.
Like the wealthy Shunammite woman who asks Elisha (and ultimately God) for a son in her barrenness (2 Kings 4), children have a way of being bold in their requests because they are not so limited by pessimism, negativity, and utimately unbelief. So like children, we are instructed to pray to our Father, emulating the child-father relationship in the way we ask.
In other words, knowing that our Father gives good gifts, we bring our requests, however silly or superficial or unimportant they seem to us. We have to learn the bravery of children in prayer, trusting God to do all that we ask and more. Prayer, afterall, has divided seas, caused rain to come and go for years, defeated mighty armies, brought back the dead, opened the eyes of the blind, and on the list goes. Are we brave enough to pray that way?