It’s during my hour morning drive to work that God begins to prick my mind of daily events, people’s lives, memories of the past, and I slowly slip into a state of wonderment and what could have been.
I have always believed the bible is the absolute true word of God; from cover to cover. God penned each word through many gifted prophets and those who sought His will while enduring strife and suffering. I think of Job. I think of David and Paul. But what do they have in common? They called out to God in prayer during many stages of their walk with the Lord.
I remember the recent times I have called out to God in desperate prayer. I have even tested the scriptures as God has told us to do. Many nights I’ve called out to God when the hours were late, when you feel most vulnerable and your soul aches for God to answer your deepest needs.
“Humble yourselves therefore, under God’s might hand that he may lift you up in due time.” 1 Peter 5:6
“For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.” Romans 15:4
“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing…” 1 Peter 4:12-13
“Hear my cry, O God, Give heed to my prayer.” Ps. 61:1
“Be gracious to me, O God, be gracious to me, For my soul takes refuge in you; And in the shadow of Your wings I will take refuge until destruction passes by.” Ps. 57:1
But then there comes a day when I just can’t pray. Where is the hope I prayed to receive? I see posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram from others of scripture, devotions, encouragement and I wonder…how deep are you in prayer with the Lord or do you wear a prayer mask? A mask that says, “God and I are tight and I have no problems!”
The only thing that gets me through some days are when I just say, “Oh God!” And that is all I can say. He knows my name, he knows my heart, most of all, he knows my prayers before I pray them.
I do not deserve God’s grace. I have often asked for forgiveness for not being the praying child of God I need to be, but instead I am the sinner that begs for His mercy and grace. I remember telling a group of girls on a GBC summer beach trip during our “together time” that I thought I wanted to be a nun as a teenager because I felt that was the only way I could be in constant prayer with God without the pressure of feeling guilty that I had failed Him. They got a good laugh. I believe God put that desire in my heart for a purpose. To seek Him continually.
I’m quite good at begging for mercy. I learned it the hard way, on a St. Jude floor, next to a hospital bed, while my young boy struggled to sleep through the pain. My mind still goes to those dark places of not understanding why God did not extend His mercy on my child; a child that was supposed to outlive his mother. Where was your mercy then Lord? Did you not hear my cries and my pleas when I prayed your word? A grieving mother’s heart might never understand the true hand of God when losing a child.
But a CHILD of God knows His mercy and sees his handiwork through prayer. “The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble, And he knows those who take refuge in Him.” Nahum 1:7
Do I still cry out “Oh God!”- most definitely. Are there days that I say, “But God!”- each day. Are there days of peace? Thankfully, yes. And my prayer is simply, “Thank you, Lord.” Our days should be filled with prayer as conversation with our Lord. If you wait to say, I’ll pray for an hour tonight, you won’t do it. I believe that’s why God told us to pray continually.
Does prayer bring peace? Most of the time. But you have to have an open heart. Kind of like a young boy I knew. I can’t understand how God granted Trey peace. I read this today, “You can avoid strife by remaining silent about the Lord, but a faithful peacemaker is willing to speak the truth regardless of the consequences.” Yes, prayer brings peace.
I am still striving to be a bold warrior for God. God have mercy on my soul that you may grant me peace in my grief that I may be a faithful prayer warrior for your people…without a mask. That one day, you will say to me, “Well done thy good and faithful servant.”