Thursday, April 12, 2012

On Prayer

There are days in which we have no heart for battle. When we can no longer bear the prattle of slaves trying to convince us that their chains are comfortable. Or when we can no longer suffer the voice of the taskmasters telling us to make bricks when straw has not been provided.

These are dark days and it seems like everything slips from our grasp.

My advice?

Let it go.

My good friend Timothy, when I would worry or fret about something aloud, would often ask: "Do you have a little god or a Big God?"

It's easy to say we have a Big God, but do we believe it in our hearts? Do we trust in Him completely to get us through the dark times?

I often fail at this. Here in the early hours of the morning I'm awake, worrying about the farm, the rain (which we haven't gotten), where my future income is going to come from, and every other little piddly thing which seemed to creep up around me in the night. Beset with worries, I turn to God and ask that these all be taken from me. I turn these concerns over to Him.

This is difficult to do. We are separated from God by our sin. Even though Jesus has paid the price for those sins, they haunt us and diminish us. Whether we are or not, they make us feel unworthy of God's attention.

In this theological dark age where the world abounds with bad doctrine, learning how to pray is a muddy enterprise at best. I've never been taught properly, so I do what I know. I get down on my knees and I earnestly plead with God. As if He is right there with me, because surely He is.

In the churches I attended they always stressed a proper way to pray and specific words to say. As if the summoning of God was some magical spell or incantation that would only happen if you said the words properly.

If your child came to you in pain from some hurt or injury he or she had suffered, would you not attend to them? Would you not show concern? You might compassionately rebuke them for playing in the rocks where they have been warned not to go, or you might just hold and comfort them until they feel better.

God is our heavenly father, as Jesus cried "Abba!" Mark 14:36 showed us how to pray. Do not be afraid to ask things from your Father. He knows your need and will not withhold from you those things that are good for you. Would you starve your children? Would you punish them when they had done no wrong? Neither would your heavenly Father.

It is time that we learn to pray as Jesus did. Crying out "Father!" and laying out our needs and desires before He who can do all things. Yet always remembering that it is not our will that matters but His.


secretcreek said...

The prayers I always felt were the most heartfelt in a worship service, well...anywhere really, have always come from a man who was not "raised" in the church. In other words he didn't have the examples of men- fine men even but who've borrowed and worn out phrases from each other. Who says "beds of affliction" anymore? Seems it verge on vain worship if we are not careful...

Cyndi said...

Has our Father ever failed you before? Then why shoule He start now?

It may be cliche, but it is true, "Don't tell God how big your problems are ... tell your problems how big your God is!"