Nkanga now living under a mile from me with no car of her own, I received a call from her on Thursday asking if I'd be willing to drive her to Wal-Mart. Sho 'nuff!
It took four hours before we finished talking at her apartment, at which point I took her to Red Robin to continue talking. Finally we got to Wal-Mart, and I drove her home. Unfortunately, she had lost her keys. Back to Red Robin!
During that time I received a call telling me to pick up Stephan in the city, so Nkanga offered to ride up there with me to save time. It ended up being 1:30a before we all got to our respective homes. I had talked with Nkanga for nine solid hours, and we had some good quotes come out of the conversation.
One of the things we talked about was prayers as a function of time. I observed that Christians I know tend to start out with prayers for Good Things (TM), and end with worthless prayers if Things don't go Good. Here's the paraphrasing/highlights:
Me : "So say Bob's got cancer. I hear people saying "God, please heal Bob of the cancer." If God doesn't heal him of the cancer, the prayers shift to "God, please give the doctors wisdom and guidance, so they can get all of the cancer out, and Bob will recover quickly." If Bob's post-op recovery goes poorly and it's clear that he's going to die barring God's intervention, the prayers shift to "God, please let Your will be done, and please be with Bob's family during this trying time.""
Me : "They don't put their faith on the line when they begin praying, and if it all falls apart, they hedge their prayers. "Your will be done" doesn't require any faith at all. I feel like people have to pray with faith that God will heal Bob, right up to that first incision. Like, the doctor should open him up and say "WTF?! Where's the cancer?!""
We had a lot of fantastic conversation topics ranging from prayer to beliefs. Unfortunately, such things never transfer well to the internet. Besides, I don't want to sacrifice the intimacy of such an extended personal conversation for the scrutiny of any random observer. One more quote though, since Nkanga wants to start a T-shirt business with these one-liners:
Me : "God, I trust your timing, as long as it's soon."
If you end up reading this, Nkanga: thanks for the great conversation. It was a blessed time.
[TM]: trademark [WTF]: What in the world?!