A Praying Life

“God also cheers when we come to him with our wobbling, unsteady prayers. Jesus does not say, “Come to me, all you who have learned how to concentrate in prayer, whose minds no longer wander, and I will give you rest.” (Paul Miller, A Praying Life).

I’m not very good at prayer. Whenever I’m alone at the end of the day and I go to pray, I find that my mind can’t be still. Instantly, it’s like 15 televisions and 15 radios come on and start playing in my head, and I can’t get any of them to shut off.

I find that I pray in snippets, then my mind wanders off on a tangent (or I see something shiny), then I rein myself back in, then my mind wanders off again. I think my mind is like a toddler who won’t sit still.

The beautiful reminder for me is that even those awkward moments of silence are prayers. Those moments when we are desperately seeking the right words to pour out our conditions before God are  prayers. The groans and sighs that go too deep for words are prayers, because the Holy Spirit is inside us interceding for us and interpreting what not even we can decipher from all our jumbled thoughts.

When prayer becomes less about getting our laundry list of wants and needs before God and more about sitting at His feet, we are closer than ever to getting the whole prayer thing right. Even in those times when we don’t feel like we are even praying at all– just sitting in silence, away from the noise of life.

What’s important isn’t so much how well we pray or even how we pray but that we pray. As much as I’d like to get to the place where I can spend hours upon hours on my knees in prayer, spending any time with God whenever you get the chance is a win.

“What do I lose when I have a praying life? Control. Independence. What do I gain? Friendship with God. A quiet heart. The living work of God in the hearts of those I love. The ability to roll back the tide of evil. Essentially, I lose my kingdom and get his. I move from being an independent player to a dependent lover. I move from being an orphan to a child of God” (Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life).

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