Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Hello, God, it’s me March 1, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 11:02 AM
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NEVER UNDERESTIMATE the power of prayer. Never.

Prayer provides a powerful personal portal to God. Consider that connection as immediate as a text message or a phone call away.

The thing about God, you won’t get his voice mail. He’s always listening. Twenty-four seven. He is, after all, our heavenly Father. And what parent wouldn’t love to hear from his/her child on a daily basis? Love works that way.

Yet, just like an earthly father, God doesn’t always give us what we want. Prayer doesn’t work that way. God responds in ways that he deems best. He really is a lot smarter than us.

Oftentimes that’s hard for someone like me, who desires to be in control and possesses minimal patience, to accept. I want the issue resolved yesterday, the direction given immediately, the prayer answered right now exactly as I prayed it.

I imagine God wonders sometimes if I will ever learn. I’m trying, God.

Prayer necklace

Recently I began carrying a medallion in my pocket to remind me of the need to always be prayerful. It’s really a necklace, minus the chain, a piece of jewelry I received during my childhood. I don’t recall who gifted this to me, but I’ve had it for nearly 50 years.

On the front side is an image of praying hands, on the back this inspirational prayer:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen.

Prayer necklace back

You likely know this as the Serenity Prayer adopted by Alcoholics Anonymous. I am not an alcoholic. But I am in need of serenity in my life. I tend to worry and stress about issues. Ask my husband.

I recognize that flaw. So this silver dollar sized medallion slipped inside my jean pocket reminds me daily that God is in control. This doesn’t mean I should sit idly and do nothing about certain situations. God doesn’t expect that. But rather, he needs me to understand that he is the one walking beside me through my days.

Oftentimes these days, I find myself sliding my right hand into my pocket, my fingertips brushing the outline of those prayerful hands, the imprint of the raised letters. A sense of peace fills me as my lips whisper a silent prayer.

Another window shows Jesus praying in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Even Jesus prayed, here in the Garden of Gethsemane. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

DEAR READERS, please join me today in praying for the families and friends of three Carleton College students who died in a car crash Friday afternoon at Minnesota Highway 3 and Dakota County Road 47 just outside of Northfield, three miles from campus.

The trio were killed and two other students seriously injured when their car apparently went out of control on an icy and snowy roadway and was broadsided by a semi, according to news reports.

Dead are James Adams of St. Paul, Minnesota; Michael Goodgame of Westport, Connecticut; and Paxton Harvieux of Stillwater, Minnesota. Hospitalized in stable condition in the Twin Cities are Conor Eckert of Seattle, Washington, and Will Sparks of Evanston, Illinois.

I cannot imagine the depth of grief felt by the families, friends, the Carleton College community and the community of Northfield.

A vigil is being held at 11 a.m. today at Skinner Memorial Chapel on the college campus with counseling staff and chaplains available. (Click here to read a message from the president and dean of students at Carleton.)

Please pray for peace, comfort and healing. Prayer provides a powerful personal portal to God. At all times, in all circumstances.

© Copyright 2014 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

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23 Responses to “Hello, God, it’s me”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    I had not heard about that horrible accident and I am so sorry to hear of it. The families and friends are all in my prayers . This weather has taken a lot of toll in many ways. Prayer is a good release—if only I would turn to it more often–it seems that I need to have a constant dialogue instead of the sporadic one I have seemed to adopted. Thanks for the reminder. I need to put one of those reminder type things in my pocket…..

    • We are all “guilty” of not praying enough, until we feel we, or someone we love or care about, are deeply in need of prayer. That is human, I think.

      When I went searching for my childhood necklace, the intent was to wear it as a necklace. But the chain was missing. So I decided just to slip the medallion into my pocket and it’s worked great as a physical reminder to pray. It gave me a greater appreciation, too, of rosary beads and their value. I think the Catholic faith may have something on the Protestants in this regard. Although I don’t know a lot about rosary beads, I certainly can see their value in prayer life.

  2. Lynn Says:

    Just love your blog today. So inspirational and so true.

  3. Dawn Tietz Says:

    What a wonderful blog Audrey! Susie’s 16 year old nephew from Blue Earth was killed in a rollover car accident on Thursday night, so they are needing prayers to get through this difficult time too. .

    • Oh, cousin Dawn, I am so so sorry to hear this. The tragic loss of a loved one at such a young age is especially difficult to handle. I will add Susie and Tim and family and Susie’s extended family to my prayer list. This has been a tough time recently for your family. Thinking of you with much love and many hugs and prayers.

  4. Thread crazy Says:

    Audrey, I so enjoyed your blog today and will definitely keep these individuals in my prayers. I love the serenity prayer and it’s so true that God always answers our prayers; although it may not be in the manner we so desire. God is an all seeing God; he knows what we need before we ask. I start each day with a prayer and pray as I go about my daily work. We serve an awesome God – thanks for your post!

  5. Jackie Says:

    Prayer is a vital part of my everyday life, in the car, at the table, before my devotional, and right now as I hear of this terrible tragedy. I always think in times like these to pray for the “peace that passes all understanding….that only God can give”. Another young lady (22 yr) lost her life thursday night at an intersection near Plainview….so sad! I like the idea of the praying hands in your pocket, it’s a great reminder, that we have the freedom in America to Pray…anytime!

    • Dear Jackie, thank you for sharing your personal thoughts on prayer. I am so sorry to hear also now about the loss of the young woman near Plainview. And add in my cousin’s wife’s 16-year-old nephew who died in a roll-over. So many are in need of our prayers. I am thankful God never tires of hearing our prayers.

  6. hotlyspiced Says:

    I love that pendant and I love the serenity prayer. I’m am so sorry to hear such awful news. I do hate it when young people, barely embarking on their lives are killed in such a tragic way. The parents and their family members must be shattered beyond belief. Those icy roads are so dangerous. What a terrible time and yes, those families involved will need lots of prayer support xx

  7. treadlemusic Says:

    I had seen the news piece but couldn’t bear to read it. I thank you for putting into words what I could not. My heart breaks for those who are intimately involved (families, EMTs & others) in various ways. If we are so grieved, how must our Father be grieving! Hugs………………….

  8. Beautiful post – I have been thinking of my MN family and friends in getting about with the horrible road conditions lately – so sad and so tragic in that accident near Northfield. Sending thoughts and prayers. Be Blessed My Friend – Be Safe – Stay Warm:)

  9. dixonsblog Says:

    Audrey . . . Nice post. You have the ability to say just the right thing. Always. . . . . I retired early, got bored, and bought an engraving business. I kept it for about 12 years, then retired again. One of my first customers asked me to engrave the “Serenity Prayer” on a small silver disc. Another customer came in with a football in a clear plastic display case and asked me to engrave the same prayer under his name on a brass plate. About a month later another person asked me to engrave the same on a gift he had received. Over the years I think I engraved this prayer at least a dozen times. It’s now one of my favorites.

    • This is really interesting, to hear from you how many others appreciate this prayer. In my opinion, The Serenity Prayer is a particularly good one. I am impressed that you could engrave this; that sounds challenging to me.

  10. On Saturday evening I attended a concert of The Limestones – an a capella mens group out of St. Olaf. At the end they dedicated a song to the Carlton students, who, of course, share the same town. So very sad.


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