What’s your tone of voice when you pray?

Author:  Ron Vanderwell

You can tell a lot from someone’s tone of voice. Most people naturally switch from one tone of voice to another depending on the conversation.

Imagine this: picture yourself approaching someone and saying the words “I need to ask a favor of you…”. Perhaps you’re ordering at a fast-food drive-thru and you would like to order your mega-burger without any mayo to keep the calories down.

But now imagine how your tone of voice might change if it were a different person of whom you were seeking that favor. How would that change your approach? What if you were approaching your boss to ask for a raise? How would that affect your tone of voice? Or suppose you were asking one of your kids one more time to please pick up their clutter in the family room? Or what if that you were asking your spouse to help you lose weight (because of the mega-burger thing). Or suppose that financial pressures were putting you on the brink of losing your house to foreclosure and you were forced to go to your much more successful older sister and ask to borrow $10,000? That “I need to ask a favor of you…” might come out quite differently with each person. We naturally change our tone of voice depending on the situation.

Here’s what I’m wondering—what tone of voice do you use when you pray? I’ve been thinking a lot about prayer lately in my own personal life. At New Life Church we’re working our way through Jesus pattern prayer (“The Lord’s Prayer”) during this month of January. Jesus shocked everyone by instructing his followers to pray to their Daddy, or Abba. That would have some pretty clear implications for the tone of voice that they would use in their prayers.

Let me ask you: what tone of voice do you usually use when you pray? Whether you pray out loud or silently, do you address God as you might a boss? An employee? A toll both cashier or judge in traffic court?

The tone of voice you use might tell you a lot about how you really view your “Abba”.