My Prayer Closet

Do not hide your face from your servant; answer me quickly, for I am in trouble. – Psalm 69:17 (NIV)

When I was younger, I heard my grandma talking about going into her prayer closet. Childhood me imagined her magically disappearing into her bedroom closet when I wasn’t looking. I didn’t know that my grandma was simply saying that she was making time to be alone with God, whether that time happened to be near a closet or not.

I’ve been thinking about my grandma’s prayer life lately as I try to strengthen my own.

I’m no stranger to crying out to God for a quick response when I’m in crisis, but I’m still learning to pray as a way to be in consistent discernment about my life beyond crisis points. My friend recently created an illustration of me in his sermon about discernment. I was a little jealous of cartoon me because she was so reasonable and steady in her discernment practices.

The real me hasn’t quite accepted that most answers come from getting to know God and oneself over years and years of deep thinking and listening, not through some big booming voice moment like I’ve seen in the movies.

The real me has trouble making space for my inner voice to tell me to go a direction that scares me or requires me to grow in ways that don’t feel possible yet.

Luckily, cartoon me taught the real me an important lesson that I think my grandma already knew:

I don’t need to be 100% sure about anything to have a relationship with God. I just need to find a prayer closet where I can bring my heart and mind to God and be open to the ways this yearning for discernment transforms me.

Are you there, God? It’s me, Marchaé. I’ll stay in this stillness until you answer, no matter how long it takes. Amen.

About the Author
Marchaé Grair is a spiritual director, facilitator, and the Director of Public Relations and Outreach at the Unitarian Universalist Association. Follow her work at