Father in Heaven...
Don't interrupt me. I'm praying.
* But you called Me.
Called You? I didn't call You. I'm praying...My
Dear Father in Heaven...
* There, you did it again.
* Called me. You said, "My Dear Father in
Heaven." Here I am. What's on your mind?
But I didn't mean anything by it. I was just, You
know, saying my prayers for the night. I always
say my prayers. It makes me feel good, kind of
like getting my duty done.
* Oh. All Right. Go on.
I'm thankful for my many blessings...
* Hold it. How thankful?
* How thankful are you for your "Many
I'm... well... I don't know. How should I know?
It's just part of the prayer. Everyone always
said that I should express my thanks.
* Oh well. You're welcome. Go ahead...
* With the prayer.
Oh yeah. Let's see... bless the poor and the sick
and the needy and the afflicted...
* Do you really mean that?
Well, sure I mean it.
* What are you doing about it?
Doing? Who, me? Nothing. I guess. I just think
that it would be kind of nice if You got control
of things down here like You have up there, so
people don't have to suffer so.
* Have I got control of you?
Well I go to church, I pay my tithing, I don't...
* That isn't what I asked you. What about your
temper? You have a problem there, and your
friends and family suffer. And then there's the
way you spend your money... all on yourself. And
how about the kinds of books you read?
Stop picking on me. I'm just as good as some of
the rest of those I see every Sunday at church.
* Excuse Me. I thought you were praying for me to
bless the needy. If that is going to happen, I'll
have to have help from the ones who are praying
for it... like you.
All right. I guess that I have a few hang-ups,
now that You mention it. I could probably mention
* So could I.
Look, Father. I need to finish up here. This is
taking a lot longer than usual. Bless the
missionaries to be led to the doors of the honest
* You mean people like Ralph?
* Yes, the guy around the corner.
"That" Ralph... but he smokes and
drinks and never goes to church.
* Have you ever looked in his heart lately?
Of course not. How can...
* I have. I looked. And it's one of those honest
hearts you were just praying about.
O.K. then, get the missionaries over there. Do
you think I like having a non-member for a
* Aren't you supposed to be a missionary? I
thought I made that
Hey, wait a minute. What is this? Criticize
"me" day? Here I am, doing my duty,
keeping your commandments to pray. And all of a
sudden you break in and start reminding me of all
* Well, you called Me. And here I am. Keep on
praying. I'm interested in this next part. You
haven't changed the order around have you? Go
I don't want to.
* Why not?
I know what You'll say.
* Try Me and see.
Please forgive me of all my sins... and help me
to forgive others.
* What about Bill?
See. I knew it. I knew you'd bring him up. Listen
Lord, he told lies about me, and I got fired. All
my co-workers think I'm a first class creep, and
I didn't do anything. I'm going to get even with
* But your prayers. What about your prayers?
I didn't mean it.
* Well, at least you're honest. I guess you enjoy
carrying that load of bitterness around, don't
No, I don't. But I'll feel better as soon as I
* Do you want to know a secret?
* You won't feel better. You'll feel worse.
Listen to me. You forgive Bill and I'll forgive
But Lord, I can't forgive Bill.
* Then I cannot forgive you.
No matter what?
* No matter what. But you're not through with
your prayer yet. Go on.
Oh all right... please help me to control my
feelings and not yield to temptations.
* Good. Good. I'll do just that. But you stop
putting yourself in all those places where you
can be tempted.
What do you mean by that?
* Quit hanging around the magazine racks and
spending so much time in front of the tube. Some
of that stuff is going to get to you sooner or
later. You'll find yourself involved in some
terrible things before long... and don't use me
for an escape hatch either.
An escape hatch? I don't understand.
* Sure you do. You've done it lots of times --
you find yourself in a crisis situation, then you
come running to me. "Lord, help me out of
this mess and I promise I'll never do it
again." It's amazing how the quality and
intensity of your prayers improve when you are in
trouble. Do you remember some of those bargains
you tried to make with me?
Well I don't think... Oh... yeah... like the time
Mom's visiting teacher saw me coming out of that
movie about... Oh brother...
* Do you remember your prayer? I do. "Oh
God. Don't let her tell my mother where I've
been. I promise I'll go to nothing but
"G" rated movies from now on. She
didn't tell your mother, but you didn't keep your
promise. Did you?
No Lord, I didn't. I'm sorry.
* So am I. Go ahead and finish your prayer.
Wait a minute. I want to ask you a question. Do
you always listen to my prayers?
* Every word. Every time.
Then how come you never talked back to me before?
* How many chances have you given me? There's not
enough time between your "Amens" and
your head hitting the pillow for me to draw a
breath. How am I supposed to give an answer?
You could, if you really wanted to.
* No. I could if *you* really wanted Me to.
Child, I always want to.
Father, I am sorry. Will you forgive me?
* I already have. And thanks for letting me
interrupt. I get lonely to talk to you sometimes.
Goodnight. I love you.
Good night, and I love You too.
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