My 6-year-old daughter, Linden, and I made pink pancakes for breakfast on Valentine’s Day. She was in charge of the red food coloring, and I stirred. (She would also like you to know that she is a very skilled pancake-flipper-overer.) With a spoon, I worked in the red food coloring and we watched the batter turn from pancake beige to perfect Valentine’s heart pink.

As I stirred, I got to thinking about my preparations for this week’s practice of prayer. I had been trying to etch out room in my schedule to pray, segmenting out time that I could spend in quiet concentration, in holy conversation, but Paul writes to the Thessalonians that we should be “rejoicing always and praying without ceasing.” Paul seems to have been imagining prayer differently. Like pouring oil into water, I had separated prayer from the ordinary bits and pieces of my day.

I think Paul was imagining prayer as something that completely infuses itself into our daily lives. Waking to the alarm in the morning becomes a song of praise. The dashboard of our car becomes an altar as we drive and pray through or busy lives. Coffee with a friend becomes holy conversation.

Prayer, I think, should become so infused in our lives that we become pink, like Valentine’s Day pancakes.

– Matt Bisel