Seeking The Lord In Prayer

"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:15-18

This weeks topic is Prayer. To be honest, I've spent the day wondering what on earth I was going to say about this topic! But then, as I was snuggling beside my little Benjamin as I tucked him in, I realized that maybe I just ought to stick to the basics.

Ben asked me what I do at night to fall asleep. I told him that I usually lie on my back, close my eyes, and pray. It calms me, and I usually slip into peaceful sleep in 10 minutes or so. Not to say that I use it to put me to sleep! I pray to connect with the Lord and to worship and to express my gratitude for all the blessings of the day.

Anyway...Benjamin said, "Well, I just don't have anything to say anymore once I'm in bed. I've already listed everything I want to pray for!" So I explained to him that prayer isn't only for asking God for the stuff you long for. Sure, he want to hear all about the desires of our hearts. But I think that's just a small part of prayer. It's more about connecting. About listening as well as speaking.

Side note here - My little Ben is quite the believer. We were making cookies this afternoon, and he announced (out of the clear blue), "When I'm growed up, I wanna be a police officer and a mission." "What do you mean by a mission?" "You know, I wanna tell people about Jesus. He loves everyone so much, and they just have to know. So I'm gonna tell whole bunches of people about him!" You'll just have to excuse my mama tears in the gingersnaps!! And then as I was tucking him into bed (after our conversation about prayer), he said, "I can't wait 'till Jesus comes back. When do you think he will? I think he will soon. I can't wait!" Wow. I'm so proud of him and excited to see what the Lord has in store for him!

Okay, I'll stop going on about my joy in being Benjamin's Mama.

Back to our topic: prayer. One of the greatest reminders I've had in a long time came from my friend, Becky. She wrote recently about "Going to the Throne, not to the phone." Or something like that. But you get the idea.

How often does something excite us, scare us, upset us, or frustrate us...and we go straight to the telephone to tell THAT person. You know...the one who hears all your stuff first. Your very first "go to" person (hubby? friend? sister? mom? dad?). Where on your "gotta call" list is God? Is He 3rd? 10th? Does He only hear from you when you're in desperate need and can't think of another person to talk to?

I've worked on this idea of "going to the Throne" first during this past week. There were times when I was bored, lonely, overwhelmed, upset, hurt, frustrated, joyful, playful, excited...and I had to literally put the phone down in the middle of dialing a number. I prayed first. I went to God first. I put him on the top of my "gotta call" list.

It was incredible. Not because God magically solved all of my problems(don't you wish it worked like that some days?). It felt good because I was talking to the ONE who understood how I felt. I was talking to the ONE who could give me peace. I was talking to the ONE who could fully rejoice with me. I was talking to the ONE who only saw me...not me from a human perspective, which is inevitably filtered through their own experiences and expectations.

But in the end, like I said earlier, it's about connecting. It's not about using God as some supernatural shrink or best friend. It's about turning to my Creator, my Sustainer, my Savior, the Lover of my soul, my Abba. It's about being in constant dialogue with him. It's about talking, but it's also about listening. a gift. It's an incredible privilege to be able to approach the Throne of God. We can't earn the right to be there. We can't be good enough. We can only go to God through Jesus. Not only did Jesus open wide the gates of Heaven for us...he enabled us to approach God though prayer right NOW. Pretty awesome!

"And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin. Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful." Hebrews 10:18-23 (emphasis mine)

I encourage you to take Him up on the invitation to draw near to Him. There is truly no sweeter place to be.

Seek The Lord Sunday Participants

1. Jia@ColorMeUntypical

2. Marlayna

3. Andrea

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Anonymous –   – (8/03/2008 12:43:00 AM)  

I completely agree with you! There's no sweeter place in the world than in the presence of our Father, and when we're on our knees, we truly are in His presence.

This is my first Seek the Lord Sunday and I have to tell you how much I'm enjoying reading your blog. Very beautiful!

Marlayna  – (8/03/2008 01:21:00 AM)  

For the last couple of years prayer has moved from the bottom of my list to somewhere near the top. I don't always remember that God is there for me, just waiting for me to come to Him. But I am getting better at it. I love the time I spend in prayer with Him. I also like to lay in bed and pray before I fall asleep. I work a night shift, so I don't always remember to do it, but I am so happy that I spend more time in prayer than I ever have in my entire life. I am trying to pray more with my kids too because I hate that I am just learning about prayer in my late 30s. EEK I know how much prayer has improved my life personally. Things alway seem to be okay when you you pray!

Vansmom  – (8/04/2008 08:14:00 PM)  

Better late than never! Prayer is also becoming a greater part in my life. Even sometimes, it is just a "shout out" of thanksgiving or a quick "help me". I am being better about remembering who wants to hear from me first in all things.

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