Children prayer quotes
My oldest grand daughter snuck into my room, jumped into my bed, gave me a big hug and said, "Poppa, I love you with all of my heart, and I will love you until you are very, very, very old."
Now, either she was being a diplomat and didn't want to say, "Poppa, I'll love you until you're dead," or else she was being a realist and thinking, "Hey, man, when you're really old and a little stinky, I'm out of here." Either way, I hugged her and told her the same thing.
Well, my cousin, Wally sent me a list of things he's heard his grandkids and others say over the years in church. Let me preface this with a disclaimer, he's a Presbyterian. When I was a kid, everyone was speaking Latin in church and those quotes were a lot harder to translate.
The first one on the list occurred during a trip home from church where his little grandson broke into tears and sobbed the entire way home. His father asked him why he was crying, and the little boy replied, "That preacher said he wanted us brought up in a good Christian home, but I want to stay with you guys."
His daughter-in-law, a Sunday school teacher, asked her children as they were on the way to church why it was necessary to be quiet in church? Her youngest daughter said, "Because, mommy, people are sleeping!"
Of course, children's version of prayers are always fun. His 3-year-old grandson said, "Our Father, Who does art in Heaven, Harold is his name. Amen." It took me a minute to think about what kind of art Harold was doing in Heaven, but then I thought about all of those angel drawings and figured that someone had to be doing them.
After he sent these quotes to me, I started asking around and heard a few more good ones. A 4- year-old said, "And forgive us our trash baskets as we forgive those who put trash in our baskets," and actually, when you think about it, that one would probably work pretty well.
A mother was preparing pancakes for her sons, Jason, 5, and Michael, 3, when the boys started to argue over who would get the first pancake. Seeing an opportunity to teach them a moral lesson, she said, "If Jesus were sitting here, He would say, 'Let my brother have the first pancake. I can wait.'" At that very moment, Jason said, "You, Michael, you be Jesus, and I'll have the first pancake."
I can just imagine Sister Celesta or Sister Edward's response if any of those prayers were uttered within hearing distance of them. They did not suffer misquotes very well.
In fact, Tina Fey who wrote the book "Fancy Pants," had a great prayer for her child. One excerpt from it was "Guide her, protect her when crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall rest rooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called 'Hell Drop,' 'Tower of Torture,' or 'The Death Spiral Rock 'N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,' and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere at any age."
A rabbi said to a precocious 6-year-old boy, "So, your mother says your prayers for you each night? Very commendable. What does she say?" The little boy looked up at him and with complete innocence said, "Thank God he's in bed!"
Finally, as we start a new year, I remember my own childhood and this prayer, "Dear God, if You can't make me a better boy, don't worry about it. I'm having a real good time like I am!"
(Nick Jacobs, Windber, international director for SunStone Consulting, LLC is the author of the blog Healinghospitals.com.)