Quiet Prayers in Church
By Marci Evans
Keeping children quiet in church and especially during prayer was never easy for me. It became a real challenge when my niece, Natalie, who was struggling with drugs, gave her two young sons to my husband and me.
Five-year-old Omarion and his brother, Diamonte, 6, had no experience in church. They were full of high energy, and they were not used to kneeling between the pews for prayer. Moreover, the formal prayer seemed to go on and on up front.
“How do I keep them still and quiet?” I wondered as the boys shifted restlessly during prayer on a Sabbath morning. “What do I want to teach them about prayer?”
As I cried to God for help, an idea popped into my mind. Why not pray quietly with the boys? Immediately, I began to pray.
“Oh Lord, thanks so much for Diamonte and Omarion’s school, their teachers, their shoes, their toys, and for all the blessings you have given them,” I whispered.
The boys stopped fidgeting.
“Please Lord, be with their Mama,” I said. “She loves them so much. Please heal her from drugs and be near her today. You know just what she needs.”
The boys listened spellbound. They were thinking about their mother, whom they missed and loved so much.
The prayer continued at the front of the church. I added to my prayer.
“Lord, please be with Diamonte’s dad, who is living in prison,” I said. “Please give him a good cellmate. Please let him know you are right there near him. He needs you now. Oh Lord, please be close to Omarions’ dad. You know just what he needs! Let him know you are right beside him now. Give him strength for this day.”
I kept praying until the prayer ended up front. The boys remained quiet and reverent the entire time. Never once did I have to say, “Hold still!” or “Be quiet!”
The next Sabbath, I again whispered a special prayer for my nephews during the formal prayer time up front. The boys listened attentively. My prayer was about their lives and their loved ones. It mattered to them. I prayed with the boys until they learned to be quiet and reverent during the formal prayer time at the church. Of course, we kept praying at home.
Who would have thought that such a simple solution as whispered, personal prayer would calm twitchy boys in church? The psalmist says, “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles” (Psalms 34:17; NKJV). God is so good. He gives us ideas when we need them most.
Marci Evans is a member of the Milton Seventh-day Adventist Church in Milton-Freewaser in the U.S. state of Oregon.
World Church Prayer Requests
August 18 - 25, 2019
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for those who need physical and spiritual healing. The Bible tells us that all things are possible with God.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for the thousands of young people who attended the Oshkosh International Pathfinder Camporee this past week. Pray for traveling safety as they return home. Pray that the truths they learned about Jesus and the calling He has for them will forever change their life.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for all the young people returning to school this month. Pray for those that you know by name. Pray for wisdom as they begin their classes and for courage to witness to their friends.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for the upcoming General Conference “Prime Time” week, when Church leaders converge at the Adventist Church Headquarters for special committees and meetings. Pray for God to direct each detail of the agenda.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for the Annual Council meetings in early October. Pray for the Holy Spirit to guide the discussions and give wisdom on how to effectively advance the ministries of the Church.