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20 June 2012

Praying is Hard

I'm not very good at praying. I never really have been. I've always loved journaling, so Bible study hasn't been as difficult. When I study the Word I feel like I have control over my spiritual life, I have something to respond to. When I pray, I feel awkward and usually get distracted.
It might be because every time a need presents itself in my life, I know that the Lord knows exactly what to do. Even if I don't have a sweet clue. So I guess after so many "needs" presented themselves I just stopped praying. I think I've justified it by telling myself that God and I have this "unspoken" relationship where we don't even need to talk about things...we just pick up where we left off. I've always felt convicted about my prayer life with the Lord, but never had the tools or understanding to do anything differently.
Car troubles are not a foreign concept to the Wagner family. Last week when our car began shutting down at red lights we just sighed and waited till we had the money to fix it. But we both knew that we were in need of a second car (and possibly a replacement for the bucket of bolts). We had the opportunity to test drive my husband's uncle's cars and discuss working out a deal with them. My husband often prays while alone in the car, so I knew he'd be lifting up the situation in prayer. The Lord miraculously worked it out so that we could get BOTH of my husband's uncle's cars for an insane price, and also the part that we needed to fix our own bucket of bolts turned out to only be $20! Holla!
After this whole situation seemed to work out perfectly, I realized that I never once came to the Lord personally about it. We had shared the prayer request to some church members to lift up and I knew Carson was praying. But I, myself, never got on my knees and boldly asked the Lord to provide above and beyond. But He did it anyway.
It's situations like that that make me realize that even if He already knows exactly what to do to provide for my family, He wants to hear from me. I am participating in a Bible Study here at Prestonwood reading the book Circle Maker by Mark Batterson. This week we're reading chapters 1-4, as I was finishing chapter 2 this statement smacked me hard in the face:
"God has determined that certain expressions of His power will only be exercised in response to prayer. Simply put, God won't do it unless you pray for it."
Wow. I don't even want to know how many blessing from God I have missed out on because I did not dare to pray. There is a specific person in my life whom I have prayed for for 6+ years. The situation seems impossible. My heart has experienced every emotion imaginable; betrayal, hurt, anger, sadness, regret, pain, longing and helplessness. I hate to admit it, but I've stopped begging God for a miracle. I felt tired and helpless. But my passion to see this person come back into the loving arms of the Lord and experience the forgiveness and joy of being a child of God has been stirred.
God's Word says in Daniel 10:12, "since the first day you began to pray for understanding and to humble yourself before God, your request has been heard in heaven. I have come in answer to your prayer." (NLT)
It may be another 6+ years before my prayer is answered. But I am reminded that God is for me and that He wants me to talk with Him. However, as Mark Batterson reminds me today, "God is not a genie in a bottle, and your wish is not His command. His command better be your wish. If it's not, you won't be drawing prayer circles; you'll end up walking in circles."

1 comment:

  1. What a good lesson to be reminded of - pray in all things!

    (this is Melinda, by the way, I go by Miss Outlier on teh internets)