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I don’t know what the weather was like in your part of the world last night, but here in St. Louis it rained.

That is an understatement – it blew water out of the sky so hard and fast that, looking out the big front window of Sub Zero Vodka Bar, you just saw sheets of silver moving horizontal to the sidewalk.

Thank goodness I was in good company, the aftermath of a “tweetup” of St. Louis folks who use twitter to make connections - yes we do occasionally prefer to see each other in person - so I decided just to sit it out. But driving home an hour or so later in the still gusting winds I was reminded of why my father refused to fly if he had the option of driving.

It seems that he was traveling in a company plane during similar weather conditions. Just him and the pilot, circling above the landing field, unable to land because of the wind and running out of fuel. The way my father tells the story, the pilot turned to him and said, “Mister, do you pray?” Of course, the way my father tells the story, he not only knew how, he’d been praying constantly and fervently for some time. But due to that experience, I traveled to most of the 50 states before I was 18 but never had the opportunity to fly until I was 23 years old.

Now it isn’t important to me what you call your act of prayer. Think of it as time spent in mentally, emotionally and yes, spiritually, focusing on desired outcomes and appreciation for the blessings and privileges you have. It might be your meditation time, your dream time, your future journaling time, or your religious time. It might be directed at an outside force, it might be internally focused. But it is time you are giving 110% to the forces that shape your life and your future.

When do you engage in that activity? Every day, once in a while when you have time, or only in times of crisis? You’ll notice that pilot didn’t ask “can you pray?” or “will you pray?” He was looking for someone who did it on a regular basis because that’s what it takes to get results.

Right now we’re looking at the economic future - certainly there are other problems, but let’s just stick with topic of the day – and we see the equivalent of gale force winds and torrential rains. It’s blowing a lot of people off course. It’s easy to lose sight of your destination and become focused strictly on survival.

I contend it will be those people who “pray” who will still be aloft when the sun comes out. The people who have created a practice of focusing on outcomes and giving thanks for blessings. And more than that, the people who have created a fellowship of people who “pray” with them, who give them encouragement and keep them firmly on course.

Because those people will continue to fly, they’ll keep moving toward their destination regardless of the weather and, when the weather dictates a little time out, they’ll be surrounded by good company with whom they can sit out the worst of the gale until they’re ready to take flight again.

What storm has made you afraid to fly?
Who’s on your flight team?
What are you doing to build a practice of strong “prayer” of a focus so powerful that nothing can blow you off course?

 

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