Tuesday, June 26, 2007
In Other Words
"When there is little awareness of real need
there is little real prayer."
Donald S. Whitney from Spiritual Disciplines
for Christian Life
Years ago I worked as a volunteer at our local V.A. hospital. I was assigned to work in the o.r. waiting room. The nurses or doctors would call when a patient was coming out of surgery, and I would tell the family and friends waiting to hear the news that someone would be coming out to talk with them soon. Sometimes, after talking with the doctor, there were those who looked so upset. I often asked if they would like me to pray with them, and never once did anyone refuse. In our time of deepest need we instictively reach out to the only One who can help. I don't know if all of these people were Christians. Probably some of them were, but even those who weren't wanted to somehow touch God.
I have noticed that we can be very casual about God until, that is, we find ourselves in a desperate situation. I know there have been long periods of time in my own Christian life when I hardly prayed at all. I was busy; I was doing just fine; I was too guilty over repetitious sins. There was always an excuse.
I have come to realize the importance of prayer. I'm thankful it didn't take dreadful circumstances (although there have been some of those since). It took seeing God through eyes that were finally opened to the great need of my heart, knowing that life without Him just wasn't very satisfying, that separation from Him with my silence hurt His heart as well as mine. How desperately I needed a close relationship with Him.
I think there are people all around us who are going about their lives never fully aware of the true need of their heart. They fill the empty places with all sorts of things that never truly satisfy. It isn't until they recognize their need of a Savior that they pray from the heart. I think everyone sends up little prayers during the course of their life when things look rather dark. I believe it isn't until we realize that we are separated from God by our sin and we need to be forgiven that "real" prayer begins. Then prayer becomes as necessary as the very air we breathe.
Father, may I never again distance myself from You with prayerlessness. I need You more than anything else in this world, and I need to spend time talking to you. Without you I can do nothing, but with You all things are possible.
For more writing on this great quote please visit Laurel's blog. She is our host for this week. You will find a warm, loving welcome there.