Life will make you a praying man(tis)
By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
”Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened”.
Matthew 7:7-8 (NAS)
Life has a way of bringing you to your knees even if you don’t want to.
This week a very dear friend of mind, Jessie James Anderson (aka Fast Freddie, Fast) was called home to glory.
Those of us who knew Fast knew that he led a full life and there were no short cuts to what he did. For the last nine years of his life Fast was blinded by a cornea stroke and for the past two years June 23 would have been two years, he was in a coma.
It’s ironic that Fast went into his coma three days after Father’s Day 2010 and he died five days before Father’s Day 2012; I think that it would be safe to say that Father’s Day will have an added memory to those of us who loved Fast.
Whatever it was that life presented to Fast he did not run from it nor did he blame anyone or complained about his situation. He accepted his state of conditions as he lived his life, fast and full.
I know that Fast believed in God not just because he told me; I’ve seen it in him and how and what he did for others.
As I looked back over my relationship with Fast, the thought of a praying mantis came to my mind.
As a kid we called the praying mantis a Spit-abaca (spit tobacco), because older folk had told us the mantis would spit tobacco in your eyes if you got to close too it.
The praying mantis got his name from their important front spiked legs, which are forever bent and held together like a position of prayer.
Even though these insects might look weak and frail, they are frightening killers. The mantis has two large compound eyes and three other simple eyes between them on a head that can turn 180 degrees.
They use their front legs to capture their victim insects, frogs, lizards, and even small birds. Mantis reflexes are so quick that it is easier said than done to see with the naked eye.
I believe that because of Jessie’s condition I wanna think that he was always praying and that no matter what, he never gave up even though his body was frail and weak and he was blind physically, his spirit saw farther than we could earthly see.
Yes, Jessie’s position was one of constant prayer, loving communication with God, our expression of inner spiritual needs.
In prayer we can find strength of character, direction, understanding, happiness and inner tranquility.
It does not matter if our prayers are short or long, with a group, loud or silent, as long as they are an honest communication with God and not a jester for grand standing.
The well-known Lord’s Prayer is Jesus’ representation of the ideal prayer. Jesus said, ”This, then, is how you should pray”: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And for-give us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen. Matthew 6:9-13 (KJV)
Dear God in your loving care is where I want to be from now til eternity. With each step I take from day through day, I know it will be alright if, with each step, I pray.
Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
Let your day begin and end with prayer.