I didn’t know how to pray because I didn't know how to choose. As a single mother of two children with deep emotional needs, I was torn in half. When I addressed the needs of one, the other suffered. Since I couldn’t be all things to all people, I usually ended up focusing on my daughter. Her external behavior was impossible to ignore and demanded a lot of my time.

When my son slid into petty theft, drugs, and alcohol, I cried to the Lord. But I didn’t articulate the kind of help I wanted. How could I? I didn’t know. That’s when the Holy Spirit interceded.

God answered in a way I didn’t want or expect. He removed my son from my home. Now I see it was the best thing. My boy received the help he needed while I focused on his sister.

When the Holy Spirit intercedes for us, God understands and answers our deepest needs even though we may not know what they are or think they are something entirely different. He sees the big picture. He does what is best for us, and also for the people around us. He hears us in the here-and-now and walks with us into the future.

When we don’t know how to pray, we only have to turn to the wisdom implanted in us by God through the Holy Spirit. He not only reads our minds, but our hearts and souls and well.

Dear Lord, although the experience with my son was painful, your Spirit brought my groanings before you and you took care of all of us. I thank you that the Holy Spirit speaks for me when I don’t know what I need or want. Amen.

Go Deeper — Have you ever prayed without words? Find a quiet place and moment today to truly open your heart to God and allow the Holy Spirit to intercede. Then remain open to his help, even though it may not be what you expect.

Tags: Life in the Spirit Romans 8
Photo Credit: Helena Lopes