Pick a Prayer

Whining sounds were coming from the other side of our bedroom door followed by the clicking rhythm of doggie footsteps.  Our live alarm clock was signalling that it was nearly 5 a.m. time to get up and out of bed.  The nasty winter temperatures meant that Kanti had the luxury of stretching out on the living room rug last night instead of curling up in her kennel outdoors. She was quite obviously done with the stretching out sleeping part and ready to make a quick dash outside to relieve herself.  She knew that if she just stood at the door whining someone who loved her would eventually open that door and shower her with affection before releasing her into the arctic cold so she could empty her bladder.

Kanti has a memory imprint that guides her life and it centers on the knowledge that someone loves, listens, and cares for her.  If you have been following Life by the Swake for any length of time, you know that Kanti and Greg have a mutual admiration thing going on.  As an observer it can be completely amusing to watch or infuriating depending on the shenanigans of the one or the hyperbole of the other.  Regardless of one's position the facts don't change.  Kanti totally and completely trusts Greg, and he loves her even when she is being demanding or when she has those moments where she does not listen.

She can be demanding, which means that Greg has the pleasure and challenge of living with two strong-willed females, one canine and one human.  However as Kanti has matured those moments of being demanding and not listening have lessened, and her relationship with her master has developed a level of keenness and tuning that fascinates me.  This morning as I listened to the whining outside the bedroom door, I pulled the covers over my head and began to think blogging thoughts while Greg rose to let Kanti out and feed her.

One phrase kept resounding in my head; pick a prayer.  I lay in bed and did a few yoga inspired stretches, repeating the one line prayer that I start my day with.  Very simply, it is a thank you for the new day.  Sometimes that simple prayer gets expanded considerably starting with the thank you then exploding into a full-blown whine.  I'm here God; you aren't doing what I think you should be doing. God aren't you listening to me?  The version and length don't matter.  Seldom is the prayer missed.  This morning amongst the threads of thankful thoughts I pondered blogging topics.

It's a tricky business you know, deciding what to blog about.  I write as much for you as for myself, trying to capture a nugget that will encourage, challenge, or cheer you.   Sometimes I know very early in the week what the topic will be and other times it presents itself as I type.  This morning it was that one phrase "pick a prayer" that kept knocking around in my head.  I have to admit to resisting for a while because the next word association was pick a part and I couldn't make a logical connection between auto wrecking yards and prayers.  Plus Kanti's whining and pacing seemed important too.  How could I possibly pull off a blog that riffed on dog whining, people praying, and auto wrecking yards?

I thought maybe the first blog of 2015 was doomed.  However, one of the rules I have for myself in the blog sphere is just start.  Try it.  Type a few words, see where it goes.  Start over if you have to.  Erase.  Edit.  The beauty of typing words is that you get a re-do.  The pain in life is that some of our decisions leave us feeling like we are in the auto wreckers yard, all banged up, engine blown, trapped, with no options.  If that's what your life feels like, pick a prayer.  Any prayer.  Just get committed to presenting that prayer to God over and over.  Think of Kanti at the bedroom door whining, telling her master, "I know you are in there.  I need you."  Keep in mind that when she is outdoors in her kennel, she ups the volume and barks in the morning if we haven't come out soon enough.

Whether she barks or whines the message remains the same and her confidence in her master never waivers.  She knows that Greg will take extraordinarily good care of her.  He will lavish her with all she needs.  He will hear her and respond.  So you see, the crazy scrambled thoughts of early morning have somehow woven themselves together once again.  Witnessing Kanti and her master, we are reminded that we need to pick a prayer whether a holy whine or bark and raise it regularly.  For God is our help, He watches over us, over our coming and our going even when we are convinced that we have been towed and left in the auto wrecker's equivalent of life. Psalm 121



  1. What a challenge, Joy! Off the top of my head? "Wisdom, please, Please, wisdom. Just for today, wisdom."
    "Just start writing and see where it goes:" yes. By doing that, you find out you know things you never knew you knew, and you find out what you still need to know. It's magic.


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