Do I Have to Pray?
There are a whole lot of things in this universe that only God can touch. Relationships are that way. You think you can make a relationship? No way! God brings peace. God brings joy. God brings communication. God brings warmth of heart. God brings a clarity of vision and understanding. God is the only one that can make even simple things like that work. So, we had better be talking to Him, because nothing can “work” apart from God’s interaction and intervention.
Sometimes we can be so foolish as to think we are going to waltz our way through life and be “successful” by doing things the right way, knowing the right things, acting the right way, saying the right things, hanging around the right people—if we are so foolish to think that all of these “right things” are going to accomplish anything, we WILL end up very miserable and fruitless for the rest of our lives. Life must be built out of GOD HIMSELF, not things about God. That’s just chaff to be blown away by the next little breeze that comes along. It won’t even take a big wind—a little breeze and poof!! Everything you ever built for yourself, or you thought you were building, will be gone.
These things have to do with God and God alone. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord. I’m begging you. Be men and women that pray desperately. “Prayer” is NOT one more little thing that you do, like your little trinkets that you line up: lucky rabbit’s foot of holiness, lucky rabbit’s foot of prayer, lucky rabbit’s foot of the right way to have church, lucky rabbit’s foot of being a good husband or wife, lucky rabbit’s foot of child-rearing principles… “My, aren’t we good at all these wonderful things?” So, THAT’s the “good Christian life” and all is well? I’m not talking about a lucky rabbit’s foot of prayer added on to all of our other things. I’m simply saying that everything you would ever think of in your wildest dreams, including the next time your heart beats, is totally wrapped up in God.
The phrase, “Say a little prayer for me” made me sick to my stomach long before I was a Christian, except back then I didn’t know why. “Say a little prayer for me.” That is so pathetic! What does that mean? That is so much of a fallen world—superstition and sentiment, rather than Christianity as Jesus birthed it and modeled it. We don’t teach our children to “pray,” we teach our children to commune with the Godhead. That is very different. We don’t teach them to say “little prayers.” We teach them that this world means nothing. We teach them that this world is an illusion. And we teach them to speak to the author of the unseen realm and the Conqueror of everything that is in the seen world. This little papier-mâché world that you can stick your hand right through is so meaningless, so trivial. We must go past that. We must see past that and talk to the God who created all of this illusion, this cardboard world that we live in. We must talk to, communicate with, and present requests before the One who made all of this—the One who lives in the unseen realm. We don’t say our “prayers.” We look past the seen world—and THAT is what this thing called “prayer” is!
What you are feeling right now, your emotions, your health, the work of your hands—EVERYTHING belongs to God. God Himself brings judgment to your heart, or brings peace to your heart. God Himself brings joy to your heart, or He brings misery and anguish to your heart. He determines how many hours you sleep at night. He determines whether or not you can digest your food. He determines whether or not your arms and legs and eyes work from one minute to the next. He determines whether or not a person likes you or hates you. He determines whether or not you have a child, or it’s stillborn, or whether your child lives to his or her tenth birthday. All of these things are totally wrapped up in God’s Sovereign knowledge and power and love and mercy and instruction and discipline. All of these things are from God. How can the pot say to the potter, “Well, what about this? Why did you make me this way? Well, what about that? Could you explain yourself on that one?” And, “Well, I think I’ll do it my way and you’ll just have to bless me because that’s the way it is?” Man, what fools we would be to approach life that way. God is God. God is a much bigger word than you have ever imagined. So, do you want to know what “PRAYER” is? Just view GOD properly, view your life properly, and you’ll KNOW to speak with Him deeply, and from the heart, and OFTEN.