Before I Lay Me Down
I was stunned.
I scrolled through my Facebook feed last week and saw this,
“Prayer is not so much an act as it is an attitude—an attitude of dependency upon God.” -A.W. Pink
After my mind finished accepting the fact that the quote was not by A.W. Tozer but by A.W. Pink (you Christian-lifers will understand that one) I found myself staring blankly at the sentiment before me.
Wait, what? Prayer is, “not so much an act?”
I had adopted an attitude of finality. It was as though the decades of sermons in church, years of Bible college, and committed Christian-living had convinced me (or did I convince myself?) that I understood prayer.
I thought back on all my time with the Lord: faithful prayer before meals, burdened prayers over sin, and pain, and loss, and doubt, and sorrows; joyful prayers over success, and blessings, and hope, and healing…
Over the years, I had memorized the “ACTS” of prayer (adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication) and studied and taught concepts of prayer to new believers… (have a humble heart, don’t be hindered, prayer ruts, trust, service, and more).
I wrote a mini-series on prayer that I have taught many times to great response!
I had a grip on prayer… or did I? Had I become like a computer program running through the presets of my coded instructions each day?
How had my communication with God become something that I "grasped?" How had the mighty glorious work of the cross and access to my Savior become something I “understood?”
I looked back at the screen, “…Prayer is an attitude of dependency on God.”
I read it out loud, “Prayer is an attitude of dependency on God.”
There it was. I had become self-dependent in my communication. I was leaning on my understanding of relationship with God.
“Step aside, it’s okay Lord, I got it.” Wow. Oh dear.
As the famous hymn says, “prone to wander, Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love…” Where God has given us the gift of grace and understanding- we must remember that He is still at work in us.
"Forgetting what lays behind, I press on toward the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Thank you Holy Spirit for working that truth through Apostle Paul... now work it through me.
While I mull over this much needed area of growth in my heart, I leave you with another quote. This one I got off Instagram.
“Once a man was asked, ‘what did you gain by regularly praying to God?’ The man replied, ‘nothing… but let me tell you what I lost: Anger, ego, greed, depression, insecurity, and fear of death.’ Sometimes the answer to our prayers is not gaining but losing; which is ultimately the gain.”