I struggle with prayer. I understand it’s supposed to be like having a conversation with God. I get that part. What I struggle with is reconciling verses like “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” (Mark 11:24) with the knowledge that God has a plan and purpose and sometimes to fit his purpose the answer is no. I even struggle with praying to ask for anything. Generic examples: praying for a job, praying for healing, praying for x, y or z to happen– I don’t see a point in praying for these things. That is because I trust that God is Sovereign and He holds every moment of my life in His hands. I don’t need to ask for things like this because I know that they are woven into His plan and at the perfect time He will unveil them. Even as I write this I know it must not be right, because we are told to “pray without ceasing” in 1 Thessalonians 5:17. God wants us to pray to Him, but in this context it doesn’t make sense. I certainly understand praying to praise God or praying just to spend time with Him, but praying for a friend to be healed from a terminal illness… I don’t get it. God has already decided the moment that person will be taken from this earth and perhaps He is going to do it through this illness. Am I to change God’s mind with my prayers?
Does anyone else struggle with this or am I over-thinking it too much? Sound off in the comments section below!
God has been trying to teach me something for a while. I think it has finally come to some coherent words that I thought might be worth sharing with you. Please take note that everything I say to ‘you’ I am also saying to myself.
Let’s start with some questions. How’s your walk with God? Do you read the Bible every day? Do you spend some quiet time in prayer and in listening for God’s word to you? Do you think about your Creator and Savior throughout the day? These are some questions that have been punching me in the face recently. I have been struggling greatly with consistent personal devotion and quiet time with God. The Spirit has been hot on my trail, convicting me of this blemish in my life. I feel like it’s best to start your day with God. Get up in the morning, get your coffee going and dive into God’s word. Spend some time praying before taking off into the lunacy known as the workday. Sadly though, I am not a morning person. This is not my hour of extreme productivity or consciousness. So, I ignore God in the morning. I might think of God during the workday here or there. When I make it to the evening and the time is not already filled up, I still ignore God. I selfishly want to do what I want to do, or I simply just don’t feel like taking the effort to engage him. Is this a struggle you share? Perhaps, you read the Bible, but only to check the box. I find myself struggling with this as well. Have you ever had this thought: “I don’t need to have devotions today because it’s Sunday and church counts for that.” Wow. Did I really just say to myself that I don’t need to spend intimate time with the Sovereign Creator of all the universe who seeks and pursues me daily in fervent, divine romance? Yes, yes I did say that. Do say that.
So, what am I waiting for? What are you waiting for? As previously mentioned, I am getting married this summer. One thought I have entertained is that when I’m married I’ll suddenly be more diligent and push myself and have the discipline to spend time with God. What makes you think that, moron? Why would you suddenly be more Godly out of nowhere, without having put Godliness into practice? Well, I’ll be in a new house and I’ll have new habits and schedules and spaces and… Right, keep telling yourself that. All that will make a huge difference in your spirituality. What happens when you get to that point? What will be your reason for not giving God the priority then? I don’t have an answer to that. The time is now. Life is too important to let it fly by while I bask in inaction and shallow Christianity. The people whose paths I will cross are too important. The work that God intends me to do is too important. Heck, I’m a Father and soon to be a Husband. How can I expect to successfully be either without desperately chasing after God? I yearn to raise a Godly son who will follow God all his days and not repeat his father’s mistakes. I yearn to be a Godly husband and leader of my house. I yearn to love my wife as Christ loves the church and to give myself up for her and quite frankly, spoil her rotten in love, affection and selfless giving of myself.
The time is now. Fervent devotion to God cannot wait any longer. It’s not only my life and well-being counting on it. I need God. Do you?