The Prayer Room
"Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from inside the fish." ~Jonah 2:1 NLT
Prayer rooms come in all sizes and shapes. Some look like closets, some like beautiful sanctuaries; some look like rocky mountain pathways or smooth sand on an endless beach. Some even look like the inside of a car as it rushes along a busy freeway-or is stuck in traffic, or stalled along the side of the road. Some prayer rooms are nowhere in particular, waiting for us just behind our eyelids.
Jonah's, by any account, was one of the most unique prayer rooms ever devised by God. Jonah had spent days running from God and thought he'd escaped when he bought a ticket on a boat headed across the Mediterranean. Little did he know that somewhere down in the ocean deeps swam a great fish, recruited by its Creator to become the place of prayer for Jonah. After being swallowed by the sea creature, Jonah came to the realization that there is nowhere on earth where God isn't. And his experience lends new meaning to the phrase, "He's swimming with the fishes..."
My prayer rooms have been quite diverse over my fifty plus years of walking with Jesus. Of course, there's my office at home, and every other room in our house. The fields and orchards which surround us give a good view of the distant hilltops. Praying outside is the best, I think. There's something peaceful about praying on God-made dirt instead of a man-made floor. But there have been other prayer rooms God has given me.
Sitting beside my six-week old son in the pediatric hospital, struggling to heal from spinal meningitis. (He did.) The emergency room of the local hospital where we heard of the death of my twenty-year-old brother in a car crash. My parents' family room as we listened to the grim news of my only sister's suicide. My Mom's room in the nursing home as she breathed her first breath in heaven. The grass in my yard, where I buried my face and gave up my decade-long rebellion against the Lover of my soul.
Yes, prayer rooms come in many different forms. They aren't just four walls, a floor, and a ceiling. The best are the ones God fashions with his fingers-the places He knows are best suited for us to discover His stupendous grace. Those places where we can finally say, with Jonah, "I cried to the Lord in my great trouble, and he answered me. I called to you from the land of the dead, and Lord, you heard me!"
What prayer rooms has the Lover of your soul given you?