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Name: Linda

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I am a wife, mom and grandma. I am doing what I've wanted to do all my life. I am a Christian and I love the Lord.

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Wednesday, August 09, 2006
What Do You Think About Prayer?
Since reading Boomama’s post the other day and reading the comments, I’ve been thinking about something that sort of dove-tails with it. If we believe that nothing comes to us that doesn’t first pass through God’s hands, that He knows everything that is going to happen and is in control – what part does prayer play in all of that?
Not too long ago, we were facing something absolutely devastating. The waiting was just agony, and during that time I prayed fervently that God would keep this thing from us. I was on my face before Him; I fasted; I asked others to pray for us; I believed. However, it didn’t go the way I wanted it to. My worst nightmare came true, and I was angry and disappointed with God.
I decided that prayer was useless. What was the point if God knew all along that this would come? Why couldn’t my prayers change things? I didn’t pray for a very long time. I told the Lord I just didn’t want to talk to Him any more.
After months of bitterness, I couldn’t stay away any longer. The worst had happened, and I needed Him more than I ever had at any time in my life. I opened my fists and put it all into His outstretched hands. And there was peace. There was even joy. I thought we would never laugh again, but laughter returned. I understood that I was in the process of learning a lesson He had been trying to teach me all my life. Trust. He put me in a place where it was either trust Him or be crushed beneath the weight of my circumstances. For someone who likes very much to be in control, it was a difficult lesson, one I am still working on.
All that to say – what about prayer? I do believe there are times God changes His mind. He answered Moses’ prayer and didn’t wipe out the Children of Israel even when He said He was going to. There are other examples in scripture of God doing that. So I continue to pray and believe all things are possible with God. I believe He hears and answers prayer.
I also believe that prayer is for my good. Without it my relationship to the Lord is shallow at best. When I draw near to Him, I am strengthened and comforted. When I put things into His hands, I am at peace.
When I had difficulty praying, I asked the Lord what I should pray for. The answer was Praise. And so I praised, and somehow the burdens were lighter.
Enough about what I think. I certainly don’t have all the answers. Prayer is something I have so much to learn about. I want to know more. What do you think about this business of prayer?

I dug out this old poem I wrote about 16 years ago. It was at another time I was struggling with the question of prayer.


When the day is softly waking to the touch of warming sun
When the dark is closing round me, it is at these times I come:
To the place of new beginnings
Where all is joy and light;
To the One who is my safety
throughout the darkest night.

When I'm filled with guilt and sorrow, and I'm feeling so alone.
When my soul is tired and aching, it is at these times I come:
To the place of full assurance
Where all is peace and rest.
To the One who never changes
Lay my head upon His breast.

When the heavens seem to echo with my cry of deep despair.
When it seems He is not listening; is it true He does not care?
Is my faith too weak for answers?
Is my sin too great to cleanse?
Has He turned His back in anger?
Has His love come to an end?

When the questions have no answers, and I want to turn and run.
When I raise my voice in anger, it is then that I must come:
To the One whose ways are wiser
To the One whose ways are best
To the One who never changes
Lay my head upon His breast.
  posted at 2:15 PM

At 10:59 PM, Blogger Clemntine said...

Hi, Linda. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment.

That BooMama has us all thinking, doesn't she?

What do *I* think about prayer? Hmmm.

I think it's absolutely necessary, and often a little frustrating.

I'm guilty of having the same attitude about my prayer life as I do about the drive-through. I'll give my order in the little speaker, then pull up to the window and receive what I asked for. And, hoo-boy, they better not leave anything out!! Can I get an "Amen!"?

I think, really, that prayer does a lot of things. I believe that there is a spiritual war going on, and my job is to pray God's word believing and thereby thwart our enemy and his hosts. I also know that prayer helps me adjust my attitudes and motivations as I examine them in light of Scripture.

God tells us to ask for what we want, so I do. I also think critically about what I'm asking for, and I always understand that what I want and what's best for me are sometimes different.

I pray about things I'm afraid of or concerned about. I pray for people. I usually ask God to show me how I can work with Him in an individual's transformation into the likeness of Christ.

I've begged God to take certain people home to be with Him, while I've implored Him to leave others here.

Mostly, I pray that He will make me an instrument of His grace. Then I get busy.

Excellent question, Linda.

Be blessed.

At 11:02 AM, Blogger momrn2 said...

Prayer... I myself am learning new truths and thoughts about prayer. I am compiling a list of the new truths and will post about them once I have meditated and pondered in my own heart.

One thing I do know... prayer is not always about changing God's mind as much as it is about changing our own wills and minds to conform to His...

More to come on prayer... stay tuned.

By the way, you are doing some lovely writing and posts these days! I haven't been able to keep up with commenting due to the schedule I am holding this week... but am reading each and every one of them!! Beautiful....

At 5:08 PM, Blogger Christina said...

I know what you are saying. Two years ago this October my son's friend who was only 12 committed suicide. I got so angry with God for letting this boy struggle with many mental issues that I didn't want to talk to him at all. After awhile I found myself praying that this boy made it to Heaven. I didn't care what people believed about taking your own life or any of the other stuff. I just told God I think if he can't let a child in to Heaven that couldn't help all the stuff he was given, at only the age of 12, still a baby in my book, that I was going to stay mad. I didn't stay mad and after awhile of praying , I mean months, I felt like God was listening to me and I really believe the angels welcomed this soul into Heaven. I guess what prayers do is let God know what's in your heart, and gives him a chance to comfort you and let you know that he is there and still on your side. I don't know how much sense this post makes to you, but it is just what I believe.

At 12:21 PM, Blogger Cheryl said...

So once again BooMama has everyone thinking. She is soooo good at that.
It has been so interesting reading all the comments. Now BooMama has referred her readers to your blog.
I have had the same questions you have. That "He knows everything that is going to happen and is in control – what part does prayer play in all of that?"
And I also believe "prayer is not always about changing God's mind as much as it is about changing our own wills and minds to conform to His".
It's be an interesting week.

At 3:37 PM, Blogger Belle-ah said...

Prayer is definately for our good, but I like to believe God loves to hear our voices and hearts in prayer as well -- in the same way that I love to hear my children when they just are itching to share something with me (especially when it is more than a complaint or something they want). I love it that they want to talk to ME...I think God loves that from His children as well.

Have a wonder filled weekend!

At 11:33 PM, Blogger EmilyJane said...

Hi Linda. I really enjoyed this post and can relate to it in so many ways. I'm in a dark period regarding prayer, and I'm sure it has a lot to do with the fact that we haven't found a new church since we moved. (Not the best time to be silent towards God, I know, especially when clearly we need His guidance) Btw, I'm not familiar with Boomama and am interested in reading her post & comments that inspired you here. Could you post a link?
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

At 11:12 PM, Blogger mouse said...

Linda I have to say that poem you wrote, WOW!! The last two stanaza's (spelling??) man it spoke to me. That I understood without question. Thanks!!


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