It is my sincere hope that you recognize this quote. If you do not, please, please find a copy of “Steel Magnolias” as quickly as humanly possible. I have it on VHS somewhere in the attic if you have a VCR and want to borrow it. I haven’t gotten around to buying the DVD mostly because I know each line by heart. But this post isn’t really about the movie anyway.
It usually takes a tragedy to exchange the “Thoughts and prayers” of it all. Or at least the threat of a tragedy before you get them. Maybe even a hint of tragedy on the horizon…like, oh, I don’t know, a hurricane gearing up to brush along the coast of the state you live in…
Even if you do not believe in angels, or saints or heaven or God, fear not, there are plenty of people like me who are praying on your behalf. Now, before you tell me “thank you, but no thank you”; please know I will not be deterred. You do not need to be at all religious to benefit from my practice and it doesn’t align you to a faith to have prayers said on your behalf. If it’s easier – think of it as a small whispered cheer from me to you. (If you are Catholic, I will say peace be with you- to which you will reply “And also with your spirit” or “And also with you” – depending on when you last went to mass, which by the way, my mom will recommend that you do).
I have a pretty long prayer list that I run through, no less than twice a day, but usually more. I don’t wait for hurricane season, or love bug season or tax season before I get serious about prayer. Mine come from the heart so they tend to be pretty specific, but I don’t mind sharing a few in the event you are new to the practice and need a template.
The all-encompassing prayer – this is my first of the morning and last of the night silent prayer that I have been saying since I can remember (which is about twenty five years) – “Please watch over and keep safe everyone I know and love and everyone they know and love and everyone THEY know and love until it includes everyone in the whole wide world, amen”. (I am not saying I have a direct line to fate, but if anything good happened to you in the past 25 years, well, then, you’re welcome).
The random act of kindness prayer – there is an act that goes along with the little prayer, so yes you will have to actually do something, but don’t count yourself out just yet. Sometimes, it is super small, for example – if I see a penny that is tails up, I will bend down and flip it over so that someone else will find a heads up lucky penny. I think this is even LUCKIER for the “finder” than finding a penny heads up because someone literally turned the would-be-recipient’s luck around for them. When I do this or some other small random act of kindness I say “let this better someone’s day”. I really only started doing that since I could drive – so again, if you found a penny heads up – even on another continent – I don’t want to get an inflated sense of self here, buuuuuuut, you’re welcome.
The very specific, descriptive prayer so that the universe knows exactly what you are requesting – here is where you can make it about your own very personal request. I implore you to try this one out and ready yourself for a miracle to unfold no matter how impossible it seems. Whether it is “please give me the courage to pursue my dreams” or “please surround me with people who truly want the best for me” or “please inspire Beyonce to drop another killer album”, the key is to ask specifically and believe that it is achievable. And if you find yourself smack dab in the middle of pursuing your dreams, surrounded by people who truly want the best for you while listening to Queen Bey, know that you have a silent cheerleader who knew you could do it all along.