Portraits of Prayer — The Tantrum

If prayer is simply communicating with the Father, then it doesn’t have to look the same for everybody all the time. I communicate with people in a multitude of ways: facial expressions, text messages, phone calls, in person, and (on rare occasion these days) with a hand-written note. My prayers don’t always include a “Dear God” and an “Amen”. Sometimes there are words. Sometimes I just point. Sometimes I scream. Sometimes I sit in silence and just emote. Sometimes, as a means of intercession, I write parable-esque vignettes of how I would like things to be. The following is one such vignette.

The Tantrum

She approached confidently, just like He had taught her, bringing a smile to His lips and delight to His heart.  As He walked toward the object of His affection He noticed something different about her gait.  It was heavier, quicker, louder than usual.  She was practically stomping.

He opened His arms to greet her, but she stopped just shy of His embrace, blood-shot eyes blazing and pointer finger aimed at His chest like a loaded gun.  Her face was flush, teeth gritted, and eyes brimming with tears she refused to let fall.  Every muscle in her body was rigid.  It pained Him to see her this way.

He continued to smile because He loved their time together, but He dropped His arms and waited to hear what she so obviously wanted to say. “HOW COULD YOU…?!!”  She stomped but could say nothing more.  Tears breached their levies, limiting her expressions of anger and frustration to clinched fists, pointing fingers, and strained scowls of disappointment.

His delight seamlessly transitioned to compassion, seeing beyond the fury to the confused pain.  Even if He explained she wouldn’t understand.  If only she would trust His heart for her.

He took the final step necessary for their embrace.  When He did, her shaking fists landed on His chest and began to pound.  He wrapped His arms around the perimeter of hostility and hurt and drew her to Him in spite of the tantrum. Fists and feet took turns striking His sternum and His shins.  She arched her back in an attempt to push away from the target of her blows… until the fury gave way to sobs and she collapsed in His arms, exhausted in every way.

He held her, knowing His nearness was enough for her troubled heart, willing her to rest and allow Him to work even in the midst of tragedy, whispering words of comfort to the depths of her soul.