I seem to be praying a lot for these kiddos lately. I don’t know why I thought things would ever slow down as they got older. Or maybe I never really thought about it at all. Praying and pleading on behalf of my kids just seems to come naturally as a mom. As I look back I realize there was equal prayer pleads about myself as the mom: “please don’t let me get this wrong God!” Sometimes I don’t even realize I’m praying until I’m halfway into my dialog. I really want effectual, well thought out, theologically correct prayers; but in reality, they are usually just desperate pleas from a momma’s heart. Or, sighing pleas of relief and gratitude. If I get down to the nitty gritty, my prayers aren’t eloquent and maybe even have some imperfect motivations. Looking to 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” I do want a more consistent continual conversations as a life living in the center of His will.
I’ve tried to learn a lot about prayer over my life. (Sometimes with the very flawed thought that if I did it “right” He’d listen whole heartedly) Everything from the Power of a Praying Wife or Mom; Prayer of Jabez (after further study realizing it was not actually given to us to as a model of prayer.) I’ve studied the Lord’s Prayer in Luke 11 and Matthew 6, even trying to memorize its outline so my prayers would be similar to Jesus. I’ve learned to pray His word back to Him and praying with scriptures. I’ve learned the acronyms like A.C.T.S. and the one P.R.A.Y.E.R., based on the Westminster Shorter Catechism that divides the Lord’s Prayer into 6 petitions. I’ve read good books too. Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God by Tim Keller; and the more recent (and I would have to say most encouraging), A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World by Paul E. Miller
Like Miller, God used my trials to teach me to pray. My conversations and need for Him started out as desperate and selfish, but gradually matured through the years with my understanding of my deep dependence on God. I once heard a lovely teaching on Revelations 5:6-9 “and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people” I loved this picture; that my prayers are a fragrant offerings to God and I use a golden glittery prayer journal to write down my requests. My journal is full of reminders of God’s goodness in my life, where He has answered and where He is growing my trust in what seems to be the un-answered. I see evidence of a growing peace in my daily walk.
I can be very repetitive and annoying (not to God I’ve learned, I can annoy myself) But I see that God loves my childlike prayers. He’s not checking out my conversation in light of the correct formula I’m using. He’s not even irritatedly judging my warped motivations. He loves my conversation He adores when I pour my heart out to Him, He doesn’t tire of my requests!
Just this morning I was rambling on, AGAIN, over a burden in two of my children’s lives. It looked as if one request was being restored and another was getting a discouraging “no”. Yet both brought gladness to my heart! Holy Spirit was revealing to my heart God’s faithful ear to my prayers. All my prayers. I could visually see Him deeply inhaling the pleasant aroma of my petitions. My connection to a living God’s story being woven in my life and the privilege of prayer. As good as all the tools I’ve learned are, as much as I want my prayer to be worship and adoration along with requests, some of those efforts just become awkward and contrived.
So as I continue learning about prayer, and I’m going to try and be more intentional about setting specific times to spend in concentrated prayer, but more importantly, I’m going to continue to pray with a childlike boldness and confidence of a child of the King. “…with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrew 4:16
Because prayer causes a deep peace, anxiety about my children ceases and I become more grateful in the story line He’s writing for me. I love the fact that I am the chosen mom to pray for my family. I count it a joy to be a prayer warrior on behalf of my friends. I am grateful He is transforming me through my flawed prayers and desperate pleas.
“do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
Giveaway Week #2
This week my giveaway is from RideWear. Jon and Rachel Reed are the creative minds and you will love reading their story on how these beautiful earrings started from an unfortunate accident. Ridewear’s jewelry is slightly quirky and every item is hand-made from carbon fiber bike frames, which gives them their unique and light-weight characteristics. So, over this next week, Like Share or Subscribe to this BLOG and every time you do, you will have a chance to win these lovely pieces of art to wear on your ears!