Chris Tomlin’s song, Enough, sums up our view of God, “All of you is more than enough for all of me. You satisfy every thirst and every need. Jesus, you are more than enough.” Paul writes, “my God will supply all your needs, according to His riches in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4: 19 If God truly supplies all my needs and as Chris Tomlin sings, “all of you is more than enough for all of me,” then how come God doesn’t just zap my problems away?
Let’s be honest, all of us have prayed at one time or another, and walked away with no visible answer to our dilemma. Some of us have poured our hearts out and been willing to follow God regardless of how painful His directions, but only heard the sound of our own breathing. I know some who are reading this right now are saying, “you didn’t pray hard enough,” or “you didn’t pray long enough.” When I bring this topic up in discussion I’ve been reminded that I might have un-confessed sin or been praying for the wrong thing, or I was outside God’s will. All these things may well be true, but when I read the Bible the lack of depth of my Spirituality doesn’t affect God’s love for me or His desire to hear from me through prayer.
Do we give up on prayer because we haven’t always experienced God’s answers the way we wanted? No, of course not. Instead we continue to lay hold of God and continue to trust that He has our best interest at heart. In a previous post I mentioned, that we need to be still sometimes to hear what God is saying. Maybe we think God is silent because we don’t take the time to listen for His answers. If I jump up right after my prayers, roll into bed and fall right to sleep, I haven’t always given time for God to speak to me.
What I have been learning about prayer is that it is much more than petition. Prayer is listening to God, mulling over impressions we receive during the prayer or right after. It is spending time in meditation over the issue at hand, and thinking through the solutions in a clear and logical way in accordance with God’s will as expressed in Scripture. Prayer may lead us to friends who may have words of encouragement that help us on our journey. Prayer above all else leads us into the arms of the Holy Spirit who comforts and sustains us when we bring our petitions before God.
Moses tried to get God to choose someone else to lead the slaves out of Egypt and into the Promised Land, but God over ruled Moses personal wants, because he was the man for the task. In the Book of Ezra we are reminded, “the gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to Him, but His great anger is against all who forsake him. So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and He answered our prayer.” Ezra 8: 22b, 23 We can be assured the love of God is always with us and God only wills the best for us. We can also be assured that when we cry out to God He listens and answers our prayers.
I know that my problem with prayer is that I am a product of my generation who want answers now. I don’t always want to wait on God and most of all I don’t want the answer to my prayers to be hard or something I have to take time and effort to unravel. I just want God to say yes and be done with it. But, I know that’s not how I grow and learn to trust in God. Prayer is saying, here I am and I know that, “all of you is more than enough for all of me.”