Ann Lamott is a well-known author who began as a fiction writer but is now more well-known for her nonfiction which can best be described as irreverent spirituality. Last year she published “Help Thanks Wow” describing these as the three essential prayers. To quote Lamott herself, ” I do not know much about God and prayer, but I have come to believe that there’s something to be said about keeping prayer simple. Help. Thanks. Wow. “ She goes on to say that “prayer is communication from our heart to the great mystery.”

Just think about it. You offer the single word up to a Higher Power.

You see a tree with brilliant red foliage …WOW

Your child / grandchild makes an amazing hit in baseball… WOW

Driving in the neighborhood you see a doe standing tall , her long neck extended gracefully, her ears twitching, her eyes watchful. Behind her two yearlings standing like their mother… the doe especially is so beautiful…. WOW

You get a clean bill-of- health from the doctor… THANKS

You trip but don’t fall… THANKS

Your little book with the number of every land and cell line you’ll ever need goes missing, but then reappears…THANKS


And every WOW deserves a THANKS


But HELP. I wasn’t sure that single word would ever be enough, but then it was.

The morning after the Newtown tragedy, I went out in the halls of my building to walk as I do when time or weather prohibit an outdoor walk. For a while now it has been my practice to go through my prayer list as I walk. But that morning I couldn’t think of where to begin , what to say in the face of such horror. Then I recalled Lamott ‘s book. I just kept saying that single word “HELP” over and over and over as I walked. Tears still flowed but mind quieted and heart comforted… THANKS


It really is that simple: HELP    THANKS    WOW


Next post: Thursday, October 24th



About twofelines

What to say? I love my family and friends. I also love kids, cats, and books. Oh, and potato chips and Cheez-its. I am a retired teacher who still loves to be in the classroom, so now I am a substitute teacher.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to HELP THANKS WOW

  1. Lisa Gross says:

    Thanks Dee! Those words will help me as I start my Monday morning. Wow!!

    Sent from my iPhone


  2. Ann says:

    … and THANKS, Dorothy.

  3. Carol D'Agostino says:

    Thanks! This is how many of us pray I think. I know I do. HELP was my prayer on Decenber 14. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and prayers on that day. THAKS will be my prayer on Friday as we drive to Newtown for Grandparents Day for Rafe.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s