I am at this place where I want more. I want more of God and more evidence of Him in my every day life. I want life changing interactions with Him to be the norm. I am fortunate enough to have all the time in the world right now to spend as many hours as I would like to spend praying and reading the Bible. And there are so many mornings where I will sit for hours doing just this. I don’t say this to make myself look good because despite all those hours it just hasn’t seemed to click. Like I’m just not getting a good enough grip on this walk with the Lord. And I’ve been so frustrated. Am I really so thick-headed? Why am I not seeing the change I’m praying for? I know He hears my prayers. The Bible says He does. I believe His promises in the Word. So it must be something I’m doing wrong.
So I ask myself, What’s the point of prayer? What’s the point of this time with the Lord? I mean why do you pray? Why do I pray? If you really think about it what is the main goal you are trying to accomplish when you pray? I feel like lately I’ve had this big long list of situations and people I need to pray for. But is our wish/fix it list the actual purpose of prayer?
I think I’ve missed the point. God didn’t send Jesus to die on the cross and suffer an excruciating death so that we can come to Him in prayer just for the huge list of needs. Don’t misunderstand me. He cares about those needs. He wants us to love others, pray for others, and minister to them. And the Bible says He knows about those needs before we ever come to Him with them. (Matthew 6:8) But Jesus died so that we could be reunited in relationship with the Father. (John 17:3) So then the purpose of prayer is for that. To worship Him, praise Him, talk to Him like we would talk to our earthly father. As though He is our daddy. How would your earthly father feel if all you ever did was come to him begging for things, griping and complaining about life, and making requests? What kind of relationship would that be?
I’m sad to say that I think about 70% of my prayer time lately has been begging, asking, and making requests. We went through the Lord’s Prayer in my church not too long ago and I grasped a better understanding of praising and thanking Him before I ask for my “daily bread”, but my requests of daily bread has still made up the majority of my prayer time. I believe I was created to worship Him, to bring glory to His name, to walk closely with Him. I wasn’t made to live this life consumed with material things, daily striving for temporary, and then to die. I know this, yet in my heart it just didn’t quite click.
I’m so thankful that I serve a God that doesn’t condemn me when I miss the point. He doesn’t leave me or abandon me when I’m so immature in my walk. He’s such a good God that I’ve had many prayers answered recently that I’ve been praying almost all my life, even as I continued to miss the point in my prayer time. But if getting needs met is my main reason for serving Him then I’m never going to get what I truly want in my life, which is a closer walk with Him and more evidence of Him in my daily living.
Even as I type these words I realize that they come short of explaining the depths of this realization to me. I want so badly to fix other people’s hard situations, so much so that I’ve acted in prayer as though I care more than God cares. I’ve forgotten that He made a much bigger sacrifice than I could ever make for those very people I’m praying for. And I trust Him. I trust Him their lives. And I love Him for what He has done and for what He is going to do. He is the great Healer, Protector, Deliverer, Provider, Defender. And He is the one I want to know more than I want anything else in this life. That’s the point.