Today is the feast of St. Mark the Evangelist. Mark does several things with prayer in his gospel, but one of the more unique is his use of the word “Abba.” No, not the ‘70s Swedish pop/rock group. “Abba” is the Aramaic diminutive for “father.” It’s like our “Dada,” the first sounds babies make. The first, perhaps most intimate, name they call their dads.
In Mark 14:32–42, Jesus calls God “Abba” as he agonizes in the Garden of Gethsemane. Nowhere else in Mark does he lay claim to his sonship. But because he does and then obeys his Father nevertheless, we receive the spirit of adoption by which we call God Abba, too (Rom 8:15–16; Gal 4:6).
So show us your prayer in the spirit of “Dada.” And, no, not the post-World War I cultural movement of deliberate irrationality. Show us how your prayers look when they rise out of the intimate place in your relationship with God.
Addendum: I must apologize. I woke up this morning thinking, “What kind of oblique questions was that at the end of my post?!” There are two much simpler ways to say this: (1) Show us the basic way you think of God. When you first started talking with God, how did you picture God? (2) Show us how prayer is different for you because God is Dada/Mama to you.
See Prayer Light.