When I was a little girl, I used to say my prayers every night before I went to bed. I was raised Catholic and so I started my prayers by making the sign of the cross, “ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.“
I would then recite the Lord’s Prayer also known as an “Our Father” then move to a “Hail Mary.” It was more to help me understand each word as well as to remember the prayers. When through with those, I would start asking God to bless my mom and dad, brothers and sisters, and grandparents. Then I would start going up our street mentally and ask for blessings for all my friends and their moms and dads, their brothers and sisters (all by names) until I went down the whole block. Then I got to my teachers at school, pets that lived in our neighborhood, special intentions for anyone I knew that was ill. I included the children that were starving in Africa. Every night when Mom had to scrape our dinner plate into the trash she reminded us how there were kids starving in Africa and how they gladly would eat all this food that she was scraping off. Then I always asked God to please help the person who needed it the most. I wanted God to help that person first as I knew someone always has it worse than another.
During the day I had an abundant prayer life as well but it was a bit more quirky. It was magical-thinking meets superstition meets magic 8-ball.
I would stand in my driveway by myself with my basketball and talk to God. In these God sessions I’d ask him important stuff as well as the very mundane. No question was too big or too small. Like,”are my parents going to let me sleep over Cindy’s house?” Then I’d hurl the basketball up into the net. Mind you my little body and hands were so small I had to throw underhand. If the ball went in the answer was yes. If it missed that meant God was saying no.
If I was really disappointed with God’s answer, as the case sometimes was, I would say, ”let’s do this three times and 2 our of three times will decide.” After doing best out of three, I would finally have acceptance at that point.
The thing was, I truly believed that God was speaking to my 8-year-old self through that basketball net. It wasn’t hocus pocus. Only now in retrospect do I feel a bit silly. But only for a moment. The larger part of me feels wistful and wishes I could go back in time and recapture that time again. My faith was strong then. I had such a deep connection to God.
I’ve had prayer life and deep faith for most of my life. Now, I feel so lost and don’t know how to get that back. I’m scared. What if I can’t? Maybe its the evil one whispering that to me? But if I can get my prayer life back, how do I? how?