I enjoy personal and corporate prayer. I enjoy reading prayers in the Scriptures and the prayers of men and women who love God. I pray before meals and when I’m in the car. I try to follow the Biblical pattern of adoration, confession, and intercession.
Something most unusual happened today. I was worried about a work issue – and I told God about it.
For the sake of this article, I would like to make a distinction between my prayers and talking to God. Theologically – there’s no difference. The Bible tells us that God knows our needs even before we express them. In comparison, our closest human relationships cannot predict our needs and discern our motivations (especially without saying anything).
Here’s the difference I’m making between my prayers and what I did today – when I was worried – I just told God what I was worried about. I also asked for God to be glorified in the issue – that’s it. Just talking with God. The whole process took less than two seconds and I repeated it at least several times throughout the day. Upon further reflection, here are my thoughts:
God is more accessible than anyone or anything else. David wrote, “If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!” This is a comfort to everyone – especially to the ones who are afraid and lonely. Remember the woman at the well who wanted to draw Jesus into a conversation about the right location for worship? Jesus told her that the location was no longer important – you could worship God anywhere.
God knows what’s going to happen next. Worry and the fear of the unknown are good friends. We worry about circumstances, consequences, and relationships. One of the most powerful examples of God’s omniscience occurs when we are invited to listen to the communication within the Trinity – the secret councils of the Almighty. Jesus said, “My Father, if this cannot pass until I drink it, your will be done.” Jesus knew the mind of man and the betrayal of his closest followers before He freely gave Himself for us.
God’s plan is for His glory and our good. Worshippers of God can have full confidence in God’s plan. So many times the issue is not the issue – the issue is the response to the issue. How many times do we publically voice this truth while inwardly wishing that God’s glory equaled our preference?
My father often tells me this truth “Son, you need to practice the presence of God.” By talking with God I am growing closer to this truth. Do you have trouble praying? Do you have trouble connecting the physical life with the spiritual life? Perhaps you need to start talking with God.