How many times as someone responded this way to your either plea for help, guidance or just the desire for some compassion? This line used to drive me insane. I can picture the eye roll I probably thought no one saw, but unfortunately was all over my face. I’ve never been one to hide how I feel and even if I try it’s written all over my face. When someone uttered those words, I found it incredibly insulting, as though I hadn’t thought to ask God for help. It also seemed so trivial. The only advice that someone had was to pray? I think the thing that I found so frustrating, is that no one explained that this was part of the puzzle, and not the whole puzzle.
I’m sure many of you have encountered this same response when you have shared your heart, or struggles. It’s almost as if when someone suggests that we pray, they have given up on us, they find our situation hopeless, and that there’s really nothing else to do. You walk away from those situations deflated and defeated. It’s as though they have affirmed exactly what you already thought, that there is nothing else to do.
God never said to pray and then sit around and wait for a neon sign, even though I pray for neon signs all the time. God calls us to work and be proactive and take action. Pray, work, repeat. Pray for the perseverance and do the work. For me the work is reading my Bible, prayer, working out, alone time, and being part of my local church. He doesn’t say to pray and then sit by your bed and wait. God is a God of action and we were created to work.
When you read the Bible and look at the individuals and their prayers, you see how powerful they believed prayer was. They believed that prayers could stop the sun from going down,
“So the sun stood still and the moon stopped,” Joshua 10:12
and from rescuing people from prison
“But while Peter was in prison, the church prayed very earnestly for him… And behold, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter’s side and woke him up, saying, “Get up quickly.” And his chains fell off his hands.” Acts 12:5,7
They believed. They believed that God is who He says He is. I don’t know about you, but who wants to believe in a small God? Somewhere along the way we have forgotten that the same power that rose Jesus from the dead is the same power that lives in us.
“The Spirit of God who raises Jesus from the dead, lives in you.” (Romans 8:11)
Prayer is pertinent, powerful, practical and pleasing. Pleasing to you and to God. You don’t need to have some fancy prayer with big theological words. Be real, honor God for being God, but also be sincere and tell Him what’s on your heart; it’s a conversation. He already knows what you are thinking so I promise He won’t be surprised. Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7)
“Keep asking, and it will be given to you, Keep seeking and you will find; keep knocking and it will be opened to you.”
Your prayer warrior,