Suzanne's Second Estate

A web log of my thoughts, activities, life....

Monday, June 12, 2006


Tonight a few friends and I met together for prayer. I have to admit prayer is a challenge for me. I'm ashamed to think about how often I just go through the motions and don't really think about Who I'm talking to or what I'm saying. My best prayer times are in the car. But often those prayers are scattered and stream of consciousness. Perhaps that's what overwhelms me about prayer. If you start...where do you stop? I pray for friends which leads to family members which leads to leaders, government, missionaries...and suddenly the weight of the world is on my shoulders and I'm afraid I'm going to miss something.

And then there is that "let's make a deal" tendency. I know Abraham reasoned with God over the city of Sodom...but is that really what prayer is about? Trying to say the right words to get what you want? The Lord's Prayer, which is the example Jesus gave, seems to leave a lot of stuff out...friends, family members, leaders, government, missionaries. It begins with praise and progresses to invitation, daily need, confession, defense, rescue and praise. One of the first lines expresses a wish for God's sovereignty, "Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven." And perhaps therein lies the key.

I liked what Lauren Winner had to say about prayer at a writer's conference I attended. She described it in these terms: Imagine God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are already in constant conversation, as Scripture says they are. Prayer is entering in to what They are already talking about. Wow. Prayer is an invitation into a divine discussion.

When I look at it that way, I don't have to worry about forgetting to pray for something important or spending too much time praying for something not as important. Prayer is simply taking time to join the conversation and listening to discover what is being said. At times there may be a call to reason with God or be like the persistent widow. Other times, I can simply say, "Your will be done. Oh, and what part would you have me play?"

We know that prayer is powerful and effective. I have felt its effects. The very fact that it reminds us of Who is control, makes it a healthy exercise of faith. Not to mention the fact that we are invited to "draw near to the throne of grace with confidence." This is a privilege that should not be ignored. God invites us into the discussion as we invite Him to carry out His will in our lives.


At 10:51 AM, Blogger Ali said...

Very true. Later on when Jesus prayed before being crucified - He prayed for people too - including the disciples and us :-)


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