Wednesday, March 4, 2009

"Always Pray and Never Give Up"

Why is it that something so simple is the last thing we want to do? We spend more time pacing the floors, wringing our hands, giving more mental energy to worry and concern over things than we do to praying. When I think of how many hours I spend talking about a problem and trying to figure out a solution I am ashamed. Even now as I write this blog entry, I should be praying and not writing. Maybe this is my form of prayer? I don't know.

I think we justify conversations with others, even mental deliberations about our problems as a way to free ourselves from the problem for awhile. I think we even convince ourselves that we may find a solution if we talk things out with others. Sometimes we do find a solution that is agreeable to us and go with it. But, is it the right solution? Is it what God would choose?

Do we seek the counel of others because we simply don't trust God to pay attention to our issues? Do we think God won't answer us in time? Do we think God won't provide for all our needs? Are we skirting around discipline? Are we refusing to hear God name our sin? It's all of that sometimes. But, for the most part, I think we're lazy. I think we'd rather yap and complain about the injustice, unfairness, ill timing of our problems than to take the time to bring it all before the One who can give us the right perspective on it all.

It takes effort, discipline to get alone with God. The conversation seems pointless, one-way (at least that's what we assume) so we convince ourselves it's useless to even begin. But, once we shut out the distractions, close the door to the world around us and begin the conversation with God, we learn He does listen. We learn that God does "talk back" to us when we stop long enough to be silent and peaceful before Him. When we humble our hearts and give Him a chance to say something, He does.

Luke 18:1-8 is the story of a widow who kept going to the judge in town to complain about her injustice. The judge was not a godly man nor did he care for people very much (sounds like some bosses I've had)! Anyway, this judge gets so annoyed with the widow's daily visits that he grants her justice just to stop her from visiting. Jesus then says, "Listen to what this unjust judge says. And will not god bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and QUICKLY."

Luke introduces the purpose of this story in verse 1 saying, "...Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them they should ALWAYS PRAY AND NOT GIVE UP." We could save ourselves so much time and usher in God's power and glory into our lives more quickly if we would just go to him first all the time and never give up in asking for justice.

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