One evening, many years ago, I was preparing a Stouffer's frozen lasagna for dinner.
Our kids were watching TV or doing homework.
I was looking forward to an easy meal - just pop the lasagna out of the freezer, put it on a baking sheet and toss it in the oven. Voila! Dinner is served.
One of the habits of our old chocolate lab, Chessy, was to troll around the kitchen during meal prep hoping that a scrap or two would make its way onto the floor for her consumption. Since I am kind of a messy cook, she was often rewarded.
But this night, oh this night, she was about to be rewarded beyond her wildest imagination.
For as I pulled the cooked lasagna out of the oven and placed it on the counter to cool, something strange happened.
The baking sheet I had placed the lasagna on had somehow gotten a bit twisted up in the oven and a slight bend was created.
And as that baking sheet cooled, the twist untwisted ...
And that hot pan of lasagna launched into the air and turned upside down and landed right on Chessy's wandering back.
In a moment of extreme shock and surprise Chessy was simultaneously injured and in heaven.
Yes, the lasagna was hot.
But that hot lasagna was not only on her back, but it was on the floor and then, very quickly, in a twinkle of an eye, it was in her mouth ... all of it.
All I could do was yell, "Chuck, order some pizza!!!" and then laugh at the exquisite level of joy and amazement of my always-hungry dog eating the very best surprise of her life.
What does this have to do with prayer?
Sometimes, we don't even know what to pray for.
Sometimes, we just walk around with unspoken yearnings.
Sometimes, God hears the unspoken desires of our heart.
And sometimes, not all the time lest we become numb, God gives us more than we could ever ask or imagine and, like a flying pan of lasagna landing on the back of my dog, a gift lands in our lap, seemingly out of the blue ...
but we know from whence it came,
and our only response is to cry out in joy and gobble it up with gratitude!
This, too, is a sort of a prayer.