03 December 2010

Our Destiny, Life and Prayers

From Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

Overall, an OK book, a one time read. But there were these 2 or 3 bits that I just loved …Simple words…but so profound.

Coincidentally, all are from the Pray section of the book….surprising because I wear this badge of being a very unspiritual person!!!


Better to live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of somebody’s life with perfection. So now I have started living  my own life. Imperfect and clumsy as it may look, it is resembling me now, thoroughly.

God dwells within you as you yourself, exactly the way you are. God isn't interested in watching you enact some performance of personality in order to comply with some notion….


Richard found himself praying all the time. His prayer was always the same. He kept begging God, “Please, please, please open my heart.” That was all he wanted – an open heart. And he would always finish the prayer for an open heart by asking God, “And please send me a sign when the event has occurred.” After a few months of praying constantly for an open heart, what do you think Richard got?That’s right – emergency open-heart surgery. His chest was literally cracked open, his ribs cleaved away from each other to allow some daylight to finally reach into his heart, as though God were saying, “How’s that for a sign?” So now Richard is always cautious with his prayers, he tells me. “Whenever I pray for anything these days, I always wrap it up by saying, ‘Oh, and God? Please be gentle with me, OK?”

Of course God already knows what I need. The question is – do I know? Casting yourself at God’s feet in helpless desperation is all well and good – heaven knows, I’ve done it myself plenty of times – but ultimately you're likely to get more out of the experience  if you can take some action on your end. There’s a wonderful old Italian joke about a poor man who goes to church every day and prays before the statue of a great saint, begging, “Dear saint – please, please, please ….give me the grace to win the lottery.” This lament goes on for months. Finally the exasperated statue comes to life, looks down at the begging man and says in weary disgust, “My son – please, please, please…buy a ticket


Venkat H said...

I wonder if God will give Richard an Anesthesia and rip his heart open. Gentle but same action :)

Your church joke reminded me of another one but it goes into my blog not in the comments :)

Manpreet said...

Thats a good point!!!!

DG said...

loved it.