Prayer is often only thought of in terms of a distinct religious effort; however, observation of Millennials might make you think of it differently.
Organized religion hasn’t been particularly popular among Millennials. Lifeway Research found that 72 percent of Millennials classify themselves as “spiritual” rather than “religious,” and Pew Research Center found that one in four Millennials in 2010 are unaffiliated with a specific religion.
But Millennials are still praying.
Forty-five percent of Millennials are praying daily, according to Pew Research Center. Those that are praying are grateful for the solace it brings and the answers they find.
Oneca Hitchman is one such Millennial.
Hitchman sees that God not only answers her prayers, but He answers them on a timetable so different from her own, it must be His specifically.
Like many of her peers, Hitchman is quite the overachiever. She graduated from an Ivy-league school and went to work right away in a corporate setting. Everything seemed to be going to plan, but it wasn’t.
“My family was tension-ridden, I hated my job, I was constantly fighting with my boyfriend, my health was failing and I felt strangled in a world that exemplified the opposite of my intentions and invested efforts.”
During this difficult time, Hitchman prayed for relief.
“Through this mental, physical and spiritual warfare, I obsessively prayed to be ‘saved’ from my life, begging for relief from each problem individually on a daily basis. As though subconsciously trying to test God’s immeasurable patience, I did not deeply examine my perspective on current and future desires, did not believe in the possibility of my requests to be happy, did not do my part to positively redefine relationships, but just perpetually prayed to be revived. Essentially I was complaining in prayer form.”
Looking back, she may feel like she was complaining in prayer, but Hitchman was actually finding solace as she waited for the right timing. She gained her vision for the course she should be on as she learned the vitally important role faith plays in her life.
“In the wake of my pity party, with God’s time, determination grew three-fold and I began laying seeds, watching growth and finally harvesting what I loved. God is undoubtedly the reason for every positive thing that has happened to me this year and always. I could not be more thankful for God’s patience, love and particularly in recent occurrences, His impeccable, unmatched timing.”
One of the good things Hitchman “harvested” this year was writing a proposal and then assembling a compilation and documentary discussing the socio-political needs and voices of Millennials entitled The Millennial Blueprint Project.
Follow the 2nd Annual “Gen Y Gives Thanks” series during the entire month of November. Each day a different Millennial will express what he/she is most grateful for this year. Click here to read all “Gen Y Gives Thanks” entries, including the ones from last year.