Thursday, October 11, 2007

Limiting the Limitless

As I was lying in my bed, praying last night I came to a request that has been heavy on my heart, and frankly I don't know how to pray the best way for it. But my thoughts/prayers went something like this ... "Lord, I don't know how to pray. Please make ____, give me _____ or take this ____ away." Just as I finished those words a couple thoughts came to me. "Are those His only options? Because I gave Him these three options He can't do anything else? Am I somehow telling God what He can and can't do? Am I somehow limiting Him, who is limitless?"

Perhaps it's just a slip of the tongue, or something deeper. The word "or" is so little, slips in so unnoticed sometimes, it's easy to say, it rolls off our tongue so easily. If it is a slip of the tongue maybe we should be more careful to make sure that it is simply a slip of the tongue and perhaps change how we say what we say in our prayers.

But maybe it's something deeper. When we insert the word "or" into our prayers, do we truly believe that those are the only ways to solve our problems and that God must work according to the options we have laid before Him? Do we believe that nothing else could possibly do to make the situations (which, if you remember, are God's doings to begin with) work out to some kind of good, or at least in a way that we might end up liking?

Shouldn't we, instead, take a different road. "casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7 ESV). "do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God" (Philippians 4:6 ESV).

Maybe it's just me, but those verses don't say anything about listing your options to Christ, "Casting all our anxieties [worries] on Him," implies that we cast them and leave them on Him, that we tell Him our worries, our requests and leave it in His hands, "because He cares for you."

So here's what I'm getting at: pray, pray, pray, and then pray some more, we are called and commanded to pray, letting our requests and worries, anxieties, be made known to God, but that we watch ourselves, don't slip in the "or" word and then think God has to work according to our standards or options that we cast on Him with our requests and worries. Let your requests and worries be made known, then let go, trust, surrender, submit and know that God works by His standards, His options, His power (with which He does things we never even thought to pray about) and in His time! God is limitless, don't limit Him with our petty options on how we think things should go.

1 comment:

Katya said...

So true, Ana! May we truly pray with a heart that trusts Him completely and doesn't try to hold a part of ourselves back out of fear...purposefully giving the situation into His hands without "strings attached" will begin to teach us that surrender and trust that is so necessary for the life of Faith. Thank you for helping us to look at how we pray frankly so that we can endeavor to cultivate prayer that displays a childlike humility and trust, knowing that He will do all things well.