One year ago, I was not a person of prayer. I loved Jesus but I did not spend a lot of time in prayer. Then I went on a trip to Panama City called Beach Reach. There, I heavily relied on prayer and learned the true wonders and powers that praying can provide. This year I returned to Beach Reach with a whole new attitude. Prayer was not only helpful but necessary. I again watched God work wonders through prayer during my spring break in PCB. But recently, I have been unable to gather my thoughts and put them into words. I have a scattered brain with a lot of good stuff going on up there. So when something so complex and intimate as prayer is on my mind, I struggle to translate those thoughts into something comprehensible.
I have started wondering if my petty prayers were worth taking to a God of such hugeness. By petty prayers, I mean praying for a good grade on a test or for my team to win a game. In Panama City we prayed for huge things because God is capable of anything. But when it comes to the smaller prayers I just don’t feel as holy when I pray for good grades. To me, God is so much bigger than wins and losses in life. I wrestle with the idea that my A on a test may or may not further God’s kingdom. I am not sure if anyone has ever felt the same way or if I am even making sense but this topic has been on my heart a lot lately. The good news is, I think I have come to some sort of an answer for myself and I feel obligated to share.
Most people know Philippians 4:6 “Worry about nothing. Pray about everything.” Some versions use the words “Do not be anxious”. This initially tripped me up because for whatever reason, I feel guilty about praying for things that are not spiritual. So I went through a phase where I did not talk to God about any of what I consider the petty stuff. Then I realized that I am stupid. God wants us to come to him about everything. Because as soon as I stop going to God, I start to take matters into my own hands. I cannot do it alone, and you can’t either.
Anytime I worry or am anxious, that is bringing me away from God. I put more effort into worrying than I do praying. That is why Philippians 4:6 makes so much sense to me now. My greatest anxiety in life comes from school. I put unnecessary pressure on myself and it can really mess me up. That anxiety is a result of me trying to live life by myself. What I understand about God is that everything we do should be in the glory of his son. I think sometimes we can get in a pattern of selfish prayer and that we are just looking out for our wants and needs. I want a high GPA, I need my team to win (so we don’t run), etc. An easy fix to this is to ask God for these things so we can glorify him. Our response to God’s response should be glory no matter what. If I fail I can use that to make God’s name known. Now don’t get me wrong, I am still trying to figure this all out, I am definitely not the first one to thank God for losing a game. The cool thing about all of this is that no matter how we pray, we are still God’s children and he loves us so so much.
I still feel like my head is a jumbled mess, but I hope that this makes sense. Long story short, prayer is powerful and God is here to listen.
Jesus loves ya!