Prayer Station

We rarely (probably never) know what the harvest of the seeds we sow will be. All we know is we need to keep sowing if we want to harvest. However we might reflect on the purpose and meaning of marriage, Baha’u’llah gives us a very clear guidance:

Enter into wedlock, O people, that ye may bring forth one who will make mention of Me amid My servants. This is My bidding unto you; hold fast to it as an assistance to yourselves.
(Baha’u’llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 41)

My four and a half year old daughter gave me a terrific lesson yesterday, one of those moments I was grateful for and humbled by — when the student becomes the teacher.

Yesterday morning I took my two beautiful daughters to the “orange park” — one of the treats I have for them — by putting them on a little bike trailer. They have fun on the way there and back, and fun at the actual playground. It is one of those special moments and places we have that we know is ours, and we all look forward to it.

As we arrived at the playground on that sunny Sunday morning, the only other people there were a mother and her two and a half year old son, hesitating whether to stay and play or go on with their own bike ride. My girls’ energy, abundantly shared as soon as they arrived, apparently convinced the boy that he also wanted to stay and play.

The special moment I wanted to share about took place when my Sofia went to a plastic tunnel where she and her sister Juliet often like to sit and hide. The little boy joined and sat comfortably in the tunnel, as his mother was carefully observing from aside. Then, Sofia knowingly announced: “This is a Prayer Station” to which the mother of the boy replied with a surprised “Oh, that is nice”. I did not want to intervene too much as the beauty of the moment was that Sofia made this announcement on her own, unprompted. All I did was I asked Sofia what she would do in a prayer station, to which she replied that she would say prayers, and when I encouraged her to start, she proudly sang:

Say: God sufficeth all things above all things, and nothing in the heavens or in the earth but God sufficeth. Verily, He is in Himself the Knower, the Sustainer, the Omnipotent.

Then she asked the boy if he knew the one that starts with “Oh God, guide me” 🙂 Before long the game switched into a more Olympics-like direction with proper gymnastics and play in the sand, yet for me as a parent, that precious moment was an unexpected reward and inspiration — that my little / big girl was so confidently sharing what she is learning in her spiritual education — the joy of saying a prayer and praising God. It was humbling to observe the purity of my girl’s soul and how she applied her own creativity in this imaginary — and a very real — game of finding connection between the physical and the spiritual.

As I was biking back home, I was thinking to myself about the idea of a prayer station. Wouldn’t it be great to have a prayer station where we all could go and refill on spiritual power. And isn’t that exactly what a devotional gathering should be? So, I am thinking to myself that if I were to organize and host a devotional gathering in my apartment, I might call it a Prayer Station, in honor of my beautiful daughter and the lesson she taught me yesterday!

This little story was one of those wonderful reminders of how grateful I should be for the gift of the Baha’i Faith, and it provided fresh inspiration for my own quest of who I truly am… for:

True loss is for him whose days have been spent in utter ignorance of his self.
(Baha’u’llah, Tablets of Baha’u’llah, p. 156)

Through the Teachings of this Day Star of Truth every man will advance and develop until he attaineth the station at which he can manifest all the potential forces with which his inmost true self hath been endowed. It is for this very purpose that in every age and dispensation the Prophets of God and His chosen Ones have appeared amongst men, and have evinced such power as is born of God and such might as only the Eternal can reveal.
(Baha’u’llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, p. 67)

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