Dec 15, 2011
Reflecting on my own experiences, current and past, I see that there are prayers and then there are prayers... In one I truly put the matter in the Master's care -- "Not my will, but THY will." In the other I say,, "Your will, Lord, but..."
Ravi Zacharias states that all pleasure is paid for with pain, using the example that if you cheat on your spouse you have the pleasure of your illicit affair which is paid for with the pain of the loss of integrity in the marriage, whereas, if you uphold your integrity (and that of the marriage) you have the pain of foregoing the temptation and the pleasure of a wholesome marriage (or the opportunity to ask God to fix what you can't).
It struck me that the reverse might be true... all pain holds the means to pleasure. It's an indescribable pleasure to have the impossible healing occur.
In many cases there is nothing I can do about pain. The pain of a marriage that's gone sour or stale despite my best effort to fix it, of a wrist that's been MRI'd without yielding an explanation for the pain, or of the test of faith as I wait for a clear answer to a prayer. It's when I recognize that I am powerless over something and trust God with it that my prayer has power and I have the peace that passes all understanding. I give it up -- make myself completely willing to accept any outcome with faith -- and only then do I trust God. "My strength is made perfect in your weakness." He brings healing where none could be expected to occur.
"...Trust God and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper. Delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust Him and He will help you. He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun. Be still in the presence of the Lord and wait patiently for Him to act..." These are great promises, each attached to a requirement. I do my part and trust God to do His part. Trust is so hard! Trust gets immeasurably easier when I'm making the effort to take each and every circumstance to Him in prayer before forging ahead.
When I give something to God thoroughly, I continue to do what makes sense to me but , as I pray each activity into the Lord's hands, what makes sense to me changes as God works in it. No buts. If I'm saying "but" I'm not trusting God. God's Word never fails. He is more than able to arrange things to the best good. I KNOW that. I WANT to feel that I'm in control. I have to accept that I'm not and wouldn't be getting the best God had for me if I called the shots. I have to be willing to let doors close in my face and to go through open doors that appear unexpectedly.
Somebody told me the best indicator of being in God's will is peace. Peace means a lot to me.
I read something recently that struck me... "If God seems far away, guess who moved... then move back." I move back via prayer. If God does not seem to be working in a matter, my recourse continues to be prayer. Worry about nothing, pray about everything, and be thankful for anything, as David Jeremiah says. Confess my weaknesses prayerfully and have faith in God's perfect strength.