May 5, 2011
I am an emotion-led individual. It can be both a blessing and a curse if I'm not careful. It's gotta be in my DNA because there are a few emotional women scattered around my family tree eating the nuts! With that being said, I may or may not have birthed an emotional child. But, it wasn't a girl. Yep. I've got an emotional boy. Believe me, his is all BOY, nothing sissy about him, but he tends to be in tune with his heart more than some people are. And just like it can be a beautiful thing in my life at the right time, it is often a beautiful thing to be his mother because of it! Now, for the flip side... you knew it was coming.
The other day, he got into trouble about something and his heart told him to go into full emotional break-down! I'm talking dragging himself on the floor in shambles kind of sobbing. Pure and utter devastation! He managed to army crawl (like any good man would do) to his room and try to pick up the pieces of his heart in earnest. A short time later he came to me and said, "I'm sorry, Mom. I went into my room and asked Jesus to come into my heart and help me to not do that, but, I don't think he did. I pray and I pray, but God doesn't help me."
So what does all that mean? When we pray and God seems to not answer, what is that? Do we stop praying? Well, some of us do. Some of us lose our faith while waiting for answers to our prayers. We've all got to understand that sometimes when we pray the answer is going to be an immediate "Yes! I was waiting on you to just ask Me." Other times, the answer is "No. I'm sorry. That's not the best option for your life." And still others the answer is "Not now." How do we remain diligent in prayer? How do we keep our faith strong during those times of waiting, not sure if God is even listening to us? How do we keep from throwing our hands up in the air and saying, "Why pray at all? God's gonna do what He wants to do when He wants to do it anyway." Am I the only one who's ever felt that way and has had to struggle to pray? There are times when I even find it almost impossible to pray for others in their times of crisis and desperate need.
I think that it's a test of my faith and strength. I whole-heartedly believe in God. I believe what the Bible tells me, without a doubt. But, I must be careful not to become complacent and lose my line of communication with my Father. I have to keep the Evil One from flooding my mind with laziness and despair and feelings of unimportance. I have to fight him off and see him for the Liar that he is!
My God is graceful and merciful. He tells me that He knows the plans for my life. They are plans for good and not evil, to give me a future and a hope! (Jeremiah 29:11) I have to cling to that promise. He is truthful. He is loving. He is omniscient. I have to be willing to follow Him wherever He leads me. And I know that it may often be up the hill, through the brush and thorns, in cold and lonely darkness. But, He will go with me the whole way!
So, what do I tell my son, who feels as though God is not hearing the heart-felt prayers of a ten-year old boy? I tell him the same thing I have to keep telling myself.
"Keep on praying. No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus." 1Thessalonians 5:17-18
"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7
I think that we need to remember that we are not only to ask for what we need, but, more importantly, we need to praise God and thank Him for all that He has already given to us and spared us from! We need to pray with a grateful and humble spirit.
"But if you pray to God and seek the favor of the Almighty, if you are pure and live with complete integrity, he will rise up and restore your happy home. And though you started with little, you will end up with much." Job 8:5-7
When we pray, we must also examine our own lives. Are we living for our own benefit? Are we greedy in our intentions? Are we selfish in our desires? Or, are we seeking God's will for us?
So, today, on this National Day of Prayer, I will find time to be alone with my God. I will pour out my heart to God in thanks for every single thing He has given me. There is so much in my life to be grateful for. I think we all tend to forget how bad things could be for us. We take for granted the freedoms we have in this country. Even in this struggling economy, we are far richer than most! I will remember to thank Him, also, for all that He has spared me from. I do not know these things, but, I am certain He has constantly intervened against evil to protect me and my family! I will be sure to thank Him for all that He has planned for me. And I will pray for you. And, finally, I will include my kids in this holy prayer time. I will lead them by example. I will feed their little souls with the hope and peace that comes from prayer. I hope that you will join me.
And as for tomorrow and all the tomorrows that follow? Well, I will keep on praying. I will army crawl when I must, but, I will keep on praying!