The yoga class was over. It’s a small studio in Bloomfield Hills, an affluent suburb just outside of Detroit. Six exhausted women were in various stages of getting ready to leave. Three were cleaning their mats, one was putting on her shoes and the other two were talking to each other about their Christmas vacation plans. Sharon, the instructor reminded everyone the studio was closing for three weeks, she was having surgery for her torn rotator cuff and would be back to teach in January.
“Good luck, Sharon.” one said.
“Break a leg, ha ha.” said another.
The woman on the floor who was putting on her shoes said, “I’ll pray for you Sharon.” It was kind of an odd thing to say.
Generally speaking, it takes a pretty religious person to speak so freely about prayer. So it was a surprise to Sharon and the five others in the room to hear it. Lynda, the “break a leg” girl, seemed a little embarrassed. Maybe “break a leg” was too lame. So she added, “I’ll pray for you too Sharon.” Then one by one, everybody offered to pray for Sharon. It was awkward at first. But when each woman stepped forward with the new words of comfort, it got easier.
That’s how it works. It doesn’t take much to bring God into the room: a few simple words. Many people are uncomfortable when someone wears their religion on the outside. But not too many have a problem when someone offers to do something nice for them; like saying a prayer. If you’re ever unsure about saying the “right thing” when someone is facing a challenge or has suffered a loss, just tell them you’ll do what you know how to do: Pray. It works wonders!
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