Just Pray

Assuming things turned out as we hoped, I and my family are out of town this weekend, spending time with the rest of Rachel’s family and enjoying life outside of the city.  Bob Kiser has kindly agreed to preach today.  I’m always so appreciative of my substitutes.  It’s one thing for me to prepare a message; it’s my job.  But those who give me a week off come with a lesson that they have prepared in addition to their already busy workloads.

This morning, I thought I’d share with you some thoughts on prayer.  The following thoughts come from Richard Foster’s wonderful book, Prayer: Finding the Heart’s True Home.

  • We should feel perfectly free to complain to God, or argue with God, or yell at God…God is perfectly capable of handling our anger and frustration and disappointment.  C.S. Lewis counsels us to “lay before Him what is in us, not what ought to be in us.”

  • My first counsel is simply a reminder that prayer is nothing more than an ongoing and growing love relationship with God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

And perhaps my favorite “new” idea…

  • I now want to give a counsel that may sound strange.  It is that we should learn to pray even while we are dwelling on evil…We lift even our disobedience into the arms of the Father; he is strong enough to carry the weight.  Sin, to be sure, separates us from God, but trying to hide our sin separates us all the more.

Imagine somebody that you really love to hear from.  Perhaps it’s an old friend.  Maybe it’s your spouse.  Maybe it’s one of your children.  Or think of someone you haven’t heard from in a really long time and you would just love to know what is going on with them.

What would you say if they were to tell you, “I think about calling you from time to time, but I’m just not sure what to say.  I’m afraid of embarrassing myself or saying something that would make you like me less.”  I don’t know about you, but what I would say is, “Stop worrying so much about all that!  I just want to hear your voice and know what’s going on in your life!”

If that’s the case with you, then allow me to quote Jesus: “…how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him (Mt. 7:11)!”  If you’ve been avoiding prayer because of fear, trust that you have a God who really wants to hear from you.