“As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.”
We humans place a lot of stock in our own reasoning and understanding. We think that because we don’t “see” it, or can’t “imagine” it, that the probability is non-existent. I’ve learned a lot of things recently. One of those things is never doubt God or his promises to you, no matter how unworldly, or ridiculous they may seem.
I am completely different than I was. My life is completely different than it was just one year ago.
Sometimes, I just sit and think about where I was in life, who I was in life, and I see why God decided to knock me off my high horse and take me off the road to mediocrity. I write this blog post this morning with a thankful, indebted heart.
This past year has proven to me that there is something bigger and better, higher and greater than I had ever expected. I have seemingly always believed in God. As a child, I would talk to him, pray to him, ask him things. Now, looking back – I believe he was answering me – I just didn’t realize it then. I was headed in the wrong direction as an adult. I didn’t see it because I was so blinded by the business of life and all the things the world had on it’s shelf for me. Now, I crave the peace and quiet. I would rather sit alone in a coffee shop and be at peace inside, watching the world pass by in their daily routes in a tizzy. I was there. I am much calmer now. Much more sure of what life will be, and what God wants from me.
I tried to lean on my own understanding for years. I was so beat down in my circumstances and tied that I never even tried to escape them. I never even prayed for escape. I prayed for love.
‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.
Love came to me. However, not in the form I had imagined it would. Actually, far from what my prayers intended. Nonetheless, my life was filled with love, and my cup overflowed. I do not claim to undestand. In fact, I still don’t understand what has happened to my life, or the “me” that used to live in it. I no longer desire this world or the things of it – it all seems so superficial, and dim compared to what I have known and seen.
Be careful what you pray for.
I often think that I don’t recognize anything about my life anymore. But I find a peace and happiness in knowing that I am firmly placed in God’s hand. For the first time in my life, I stopped running away from my will, my duty, my path. I fought God, but ultimately he won. Now I am ashamed to think that I even put up the fight. I will never understand God’s love fully. I can’t wrap my human brain around his mercy, forgiveness, and faithfulness. However, I do know that he has given me all those things.
It is well with my soul.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.
for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
And your ears will hear a word behind you, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right or to the left.
I talk to a lot of people that grew up in a church atmosphere, and for some reason most of these people still don’t understand how to pray. I have heard people tell me that “I feel like I’m doing it wrong” or “I don’t think I understand prayer”. Guys, listen up!
PRAYER IS NOT A METHODICAL RELIGIOUS MOTION YOU TAKE!
Prayer is simple. It is coming to God from a sincere heart, and ‘talking’. In John 15:15 Jesus said “I call you friends”. Think for a moment about your friends. Now think about a specific friend, or mentor that you greatly admire and respect. How do you talk to them? You can start with that idea, then imagine God: A holy, beautiful, sinless, perfect “person”. It is hard to understand with human understanding, however my case stands that you can talk to God like he is sitting in the chair next to you (with upmost respect of course).
For instance, when I get up in the morning, I say a short small breath prayer. What is that? Well, it goes like this: God, lead me guide me and direct me today. Let me be a light unto a dark world, Amen.
However, I generally worship “talk to” God all throughout the day. When I am getting ready for work, I talk to God about my concerns for the day. When I am driving to work, I pray he protects me as I travel, and put me where he wants me. When I am at work, I thank him for the blessings that happen immediately as they occur. I give thanks in EVERYTHING. 1 Thes 5:18 says give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. If I hear a praise song that makes me remember what God did for me, I praise him and thank him and glorify him in my still, quiet places. This song always gets me going :
When I think about the Lord http://youtu.be/QsEGRB695hs
Children are often times the BEST prayers. Why? Because they pray because they want to, not because they feel they have to.
Prayer is basic. Prayer is heartfelt. Prayer is the sincere wanting and needing to be closer to God, not just about asking God to grant your wishes like a genie. God is not going to give you everything you ask, and it doesn’t mean you have to blame him when you don’t get what you thought you wanted. It could be that there is something better coming down the pipes for you. Prayer is giving your heart to God, and asking him to search it, and reveal what belongs there and what doesn’t. Prayer is humbly presenting yourself for searching. Psalm 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Prayer is that simple. A little advice, prepare yourself before you come to God. I used to pray this BEFORE I prayed – “God, shut down my thoughts and restless body, let me forget this world for a few uninterrupted moments with you. I want to come to you today, please reveal yourself to me Lord.”
There is no right or wrong way to pray. Prayer is between YOU and GOD. If you pray, and feel God – then he heard you. If you are unsure, maybe you can visit with someone who can help guide you. Sometimes “being unsure” is just a matter of the heart. Sometimes you just feel too full of sin or guilt to feel like you are “worthy” of God to listen or talk back. If that is you, LET IT GO. God will take your burden if you just ask. Matthew 11:28 says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
IF GOD SAID IT – HE MEANT IT.
I will leave you with this: Rev 3:20 Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.
If you still aren’t sure that you are being heard, or you feel you don’t understand prayer – Here is something you can start praying for and it may change your life.