Home > Love & Grow > Betty Screven: Growing in Prayer

“Spiritual disciplines” are things we do to stay in love with God and grow in faith.  They can be things we do alone or together; they can be ways to spend time with God or to serve others.  As the people of Sylva First UMC share one of their spiritual disciplines with you each week, we hope it will inspire you to new ways of loving God and growing in faith.

My husband, Lloyd, and I bought our home in these beautiful mountains in the summer of
2000, and relocated from Tampa, Florida permanently in 2002. We joined Sylva First United
Methodist Church in 2012.

The older I become the more I find myself reflecting on events and situations in my younger
years. During times of trouble, or when I needed to make a major decision, I prayed that God
would enlighten me, help me to see the whole scope of the situation, and guide me to make
the best decision possible. It was comforting to understand that I was not alone in the process.
I have come to realize that with aging comes a certain amount of wisdom and the ability to
view life from a different perspective. In my youth I was selfish in my prayers to God, asking for
things that would benefit me or my family. Now I realize that my faith has evolved. And, I better
understand my responsibilities as a Christian. Throughout life, but especially during these
difficult times, I strive to be a beacon of hope and encouragement to others. In my prayers I ask
God to hold close those who are sick, have lost loved ones, or are in despair because of
circumstances beyond their control. I ask for understanding of those whose views are different
from mine, and try to make peace with our differences.

In addition to reading the Bible, I often read quotes that are meaningful. One such is from Rex
Rouis who said, “Faith comes alive when the Word read from the page becomes the Word heard in
your heart.”