Are You Sleeping, God?

Sad lady

Are you sleeping God?

By Julia Bernstein

Editor’s note: When you celebrate holidays and other special occasions, try to remember that many children have lost loved ones and friends. Their loved ones might have died in war, from cancer, in a car accident, or in one of many other ways. Try to be kind to these other children, remembering that their hearts are hurting. You might want to give them gifts, cards, or notes telling them that you care.
 
The following story is an imaginary prayer from a child whose father was killed in a war. Read it and think about how much it hurts to lose a loved one. Think about ways you can help to lessen the pain for someone else. One of the best ways is to pray for those who are hurting.

My Prayer

When my mind starts to wonder, do you hear my thoughts? 

Why do so many people die when they stand up for what they believe, when they’re trying to do something good?

Mommy cries a lot. Do you wipe her eyes? Daddy died fighting for his country. Maybe that’s why Mommy is crying.

Daddy used to say, “Be careful,” when I was going out to play. He watched me from the window when I crossed the street. Do You watch me now?

Mommy says Daddy went to heaven to be with You. How far away are You? When birds fly, do they reach heaven?

I wonder if the birds can see Daddy.  Sometimes when I am sad, I shut my eyes and picture You holding everyone who has died. I pretend I am a bird. Then I fly up to heaven and kiss my daddy and all the other people You’re holding.

Sally fell and broke her leg.  Do you think she will get better? I am afraid that I might break my leg too. I wonder if one day I’ll be up in the sky. Will the birds watch me as they fly by?

I have a lot of questions, and Mommy doesn’t know all the answers, but she says You do.  Can I ever hear Your voice God? Mommy says You talk in a whisper, and I need to be quiet in order to hear You. So I will close my eyes now and listen.

© 2005 Julia Bernstein