This is part 5 of a six-part series on prayer. Listen here or scroll down to keep reading.
I googled images for “dating” and do you know what 90% of the pictures were? Two people sitting at a table talking.
That is a lot of what dating is all about, right? And, actually, that’s what being a couple is all about — friends, lovers, colleagues. In order to maintain relationships we have to be in conversation with each other.
We share: what’s going on. What is bothering us. What we are hoping for. And then we shut up and listen. Because we are really interested in what the other person has to say. What they are thinking and feeling really matters to us.
This thought on prayer is really not a biggie. You probably have this THought about prayer or maybe even this analogy in your arsenol. But if I didn’t put it out here in this series then the series would be deficient.
I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love. I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.Ephesians 3:16-19
Yes: prayer as conversation with God. It is sitting with God. It is talking to God and with God. And it is being still and just listening.
This last part is hard for most of us, I think. And, we don’t really get taught it. Instead we are taught to have this list of things to lift before God (as if God needs this list to know what to do). Rattle it off, give thanks, and sign off.
My concept of prayer changed a few years back after reading the book Mansions of the Heart by R. Thomas Ashbrook. He invited me to think about prayer as time with God — just like I would make time for a good friend or a spouse. And that is when I began to picture two Adirondack chairs by a lake with God and I just hanging. We just watch the water or the mist or the deer on the other side. We listen to the frogs. Sometimes I have something to say. Sometimes God does. Lots of time, we just sit.
I pray that you find a way to be with God, something other than the recitation of a divine honey-do list. Something that brings you life and hope and a deeper relationship with God.