Since we've already established how much I love babies, I won't be redundant - I'll just jump right in.
Sometimes I'll find myself day-dreaming about my future kids (and even dreaming about them, which, even for me, is kind of creepy). I often wonder what they'll look like, what gender they'll be, what they'll do for fun, what their personalities will be like. Will they be healthy? Will they like sports? Will they be total nerds, like me, and be captain of the Quiz Bowl team (Davidson County champs!!)? Will they play any instruments? Most importantly, will they grow up to love Jesus?
I really hope that I have at least one boy (or girl!) who LOVES dinosaurs. No matter what you believe about dinosaurs existence/extinction, you have to admit that they were pretty dang cool. They're just so surreal and so unique! I recently saw a little boy's birthday party online that was dinosaur themed - one word: awesome. At that moment, I unconsciously planned my future kid's birthday party, fossil dig and dino cake included. When I was a kid, I loved having birthday parties and its one of the things I can't wait to plan and host for my own kids to celebrate a fun day all about them (and they're not even born yet - nor will they be for a LONG time).
Okay, stay with me here, I'm working on a good metaphor.
One of my friends has talked about how he didn't ever have many sleepovers or invite a lot of people to his birthday parties as a kid because he didn't want to inconvenience his parents or make them go out of their way to cater to him. As a future hopeful parent, I want my kids to ask me for big birthday parties and spur of the moment sleepovers with crazy colored nail polish, cheesy romantic comedies, and 17 bags of popcorn. I want to be able to gift them with great memories and fun parties because even now, even though they haven't even been born, I love my future kids. A lot. I can't even fathom how much I'm going to fall in love with them once they are actually real.
In the same way, how much does God want to dote on his heavenly children?! Take my crazy visions of dinosaur parties and multiply it by infinity. Does that mean God wants to make us rich and make our lives carefree? No. But does He want us to ask Him for things? You betcha. Aside from communicating and praising God, a huge component of prayer is about bringing our needs and desires before our Creator. Don't get me wrong - God isn't a magic genie that we only come to with our wishes. He can still tell us "no." He can tell us to wait. And that's okay. Which can, in fact, be better than a "yes."
As a proclaimed type A individual who likes to handle things myself, I never thought I should bother God with my requests. I would pray for other people's prayer requests but I never would really pray for my own. Now I know how that likely grieved God. He obviously knew my prayer requests, but the fact that I didn't want to be annoying and didn't see my own requests as worthy to bring before Him no doubt was hurtful. Now, as I look forward to being on the prayer team through InterVarsity next year, I'm working on my prayer life. Step one: bringing my own prayer requests to God. Novel concept, I know.
Now every time I think of offering up my requests to God, I think of how excited I will be when, one day, my cute little kid with a bowl cut asks me if he can have a dinosaur birthday party.