Some prayers just happen; they are “the Cry of the Heart.” No training is needed when it comes to this kind of prayer. I’ve uttered it thousands of times; I’m confident you have too. Like when the phone rings and the bad news starts to spill and all you can do is say, Father ... Father ... Father, your heart crying out to God. It’s a beautiful expression of prayer, rising from the deep places in us, often unbidden, always welcome to his loving ears.
The Cry of the Heart just comes, if you’ll let it. These are the prayers I find myself already praying as I’m waking up in the morning. “O, God—help. Help me today, Lord.” Sometimes it’s just one word, repeated in my heart: Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. I think it will just flow for you, too, if you give it permission. Turn the editor off; let your heart and soul speak. In the Psalms, David is clearly unedited, unrestrained. Good grief—he’s all over the map. One moment it’s “I love you, Lord!” and the next it’s “Why have you forsaken me?”
The man seems reckless, unstable; your average board of trustees would have him sent to a therapist. But remember—David is called a man after God’s own heart. It was God who made him king and canonized his prayers in the Bible. These psalms are given to the church as our prayer book, our primer, and they are beautiful. Assuring us that not only can God handle the full span of our emotional life, he invites us to bring it to him.